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Alexander B. Griswold 


Cornell Univ.;rsily Library 


The stupa of Bharhut:a Buddhist monumen 

3 1924 016 181 111 



Cornell University 

The original of this bool< is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

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the United States on the use of the text. 92401 6181111 











' ' ' ^ 


" In the sculptures ancL insorvptions of Bharliut we shall have in future a real landmarh in the religious and literary 
history of India, and many theories hitherto held hy Sanskrit scholars will have to he modified accordingly." — 
Dr. Max Mullee. 

UlM(h hu Mw af i\( Mx(hx^ tii ^tate Ux %nVm in €mml 










1. Position of Bhakhut 

2. Desckipiion of Stupa 

3. Peobable Age of Stupa - 



1. Yakshas 

2. Devas 

3. NIgas 

4. Apsaeases 


1 . Eoyal Peesonages - 

2. Religious Persons - 

3. Royal and Lat Costume • 

4. Militaey Costume 

5. Female Deess and Oenaments 

6. Tattooing - - - 














1. Jata^as, oe pebvious Bieths of Buddha - 48 

2. HisTOEicAL Scenes - - - 82 

3. Miscellaneous Scenes, insceibed - 93 

4. Miscellaneous Scenes, not insceibed - 98 

5. HuMOEOUS Scenes - - - 104 


1. Saeibika, oe Bodily Relics - 109 

2. Uddesika, oe Buildings and Symbols 110 

3. Paeibhogika, oe Peesonal Relics - 112 



1. Palaces - - - - 118 

2. PuNYASALAS, oe Religious Housbs - 119 

3. VajeIsan Canopies - 119 

4. Bodhimanda-Theones - - 120 

6. PiLLAES - - - - - 121 

6. Ascetic Heemitages - 122 

7. d-\velling-houses - - 123 


1. Veiiiclbs ----- 124 

2. fuenitueb - - - 125 

3. Utensils ----- 125 

4. Musical Insteuments - - 126 



Wt. P 455. 

A 2 


I. — Generai, Map. 

II. — Map cp Site, and Plan op Ruins. 
III. — Plan and Elevation op SitpA, 
IV. — Plan and Elevation op Innbe Railing. 

v. — Plan and Elevation op Outer Railing. 

VI. — Elevation op Toean, ok E. Gateway 

VII. — Pinnacles restored prom existing 

-Details op Toran ditto ditto. 

-Ends op Toran Beams. 

-Capitals op Gateway Pillars. 

-Outside View op E. Gateway. 

-Inside View op E, Gateway. 

-Upper Basrelieps | 

-Middle Basrelieps > ' 

^ I Peasena jit Pillar. 

-Lower Basrelieps J 

-Lbpt Side. I W. Gate, 

-Right Side. J Ajatasatru Pillar. 

-Lept Side. In. Gate. 
-Right Side. J Vituea Pillar. 
-Corner Pillae [from Pathora]. 

> Statue Pillars. 






















-Medallion Busts. 


. — Historical Scenes. 





























Bodhi Trees. 

-Objects op Worship. 
-Military Subjects. 
-Monkey Scenes. 
-Ornamental Medallions. 

- Do. 

- Do. 

- Do. 

- Do. 

-Lions at Ends op Coping. 


-Frontlets, Eaerings, Aemlets.' 


-Beacelets, Girdles, Anklets. 

-Tattoo Maeks. 




, — Jetavana Monastery — [large size]. 


The remains of the Great Stupa of Bharlmt were first discovered by me in tlie end 
of November 1873 ; but as the whole of my camp was then on its way to Nagpur, I was 
not able then to do more than to ascertain the fact that portions of two ga'teways, with 
the included quarter of the circular railing, were still in situ, although nearly all thrown 
down and buried under a mound of rubbish from 5 to 7 feet in height. On my return 
from the Ohanda district in February 1874, 1 spent 10 days at Bharhut, when I succeeded 
in uncovering the whole quadrant of the buried railing. The curious sculptures were a 
source of much wonder to the people who visited the place by hundreds every day. But 
the inscriptions excited even greater curiosity when it was known that I was able to read 
them. At every fresh discovery I was importuned to say what was the subject of the 
writing, and great was the disappointment when I made known the simple records of 
gifts to the Stupa, or of the names of the guardian Yakshas, Devatas, and Nagas. Few 
natives of India have any belief in disinterested excavations for the discovery of ancient 
buildings, or of works of art, or of records of ancient times. Their only idea of such 
excavations is that they are really intended as a search for hidden treasure, and from the 
incredulous looks of many of the people, I have no doubt that I was regarded as an arch 
deceiver who was studiously concealing the revelations made by the inscriptions as to 
the position of the buried treasures. 

In the beginning of March the work of excavation was taken up by my zealous 
assistant Mr. J. D. Beglar, who continued the excavation round the whole circle of the 
railing. To him we owe the discovery of the valuable Prasenajit Pillar, of the famous 
Jetavana scene, and of many of the most interesting coping stones. He made photographs 
of the sculptures as they were found ; but as each day's discoveries only showed how 
much was still left to be explored, the work was closed in the beginning of April. In 
the middle of that month I forwarded to Government a statement of the discoveries that 
had been made up to that time. This statement was published in the London papers, 
and I was much gratified to find that my discovery was everywhere received with much 
interest. To it I owe the beginning of a correspondence with Professor Childers which 
ended only with his too premature death. The age which I then assigned to the Stupa, 
between 250 and 200 B.C., has not been shaken by any subsequent discoveries, and I have 
reason to believe that it is now almost universally admitted. 


In November 1874 I again returned to Bharhut with Mr. Beglar to make a complete 
exploration of the mound of ruins, and to photograph all the sculptures systematically on 
the fixed scale of one-sixth of the original size for all basreliefs, and of one-twelfth for 
all statues and larger objects. It was during these excavations that all the smaller pieces 
of the East Gateway were found ; from which I was able to make .the restoration shown 
in Plate VI. The exploration was carried on until the end of December, by which time 
the whole extent of ground covered by the railing to a breadth of 10 and 12 feet, both 
inside and outside, was completely excavated. At the same time all the neighbouring 
villages within a circuit of 10 miles were carefully explored for portions of the missing 
sculptures. This search was rewarded with the discovery of two pillars of a second or 
outer railing of which portions had already been found in situ at Bharhut. The basrelief 
of the Ind/ra Sdla-guha, or " Indra's Cave Hall," was then discovered at Batanmara, and 
the missing half of the famous Ghhadanta JdtaJca at Pataora, 7 miles distant, degraded to 
the ignoble position of a washerman's plank. 

During 1874 I had written an account of the discoveries made during the first 
season's excavations, but all these important additions necessitated a re-arrangement of 
the plates and the re-writing of the whole account of the Stupa. This was in great part 
done during 1875, at the same time that I was carrying on the arrangement of Asoka's 
inscriptions to form Vol. I. of the projected " Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum." The 
discovery of a new inscription of Asoka at Sahasaram, in which I believed that there was 
a figured date, similar to some unknown symbols in another recently discovered record 
of Asoka at Rupnath, made it necessary that I should visit Sahasaram myself, which I 
did during November 1875. 

During all this time I was in frequent correspondence with Professor Childers in 
London, and with the learned Buddhist priest Subhuti of Ceylon, regarding the subjects 
of the Bharhut sculptures, and more especially of the JdtaJcas, or previous Births of 
Buddha. In the summer of 1876 I completed the present account of Bharhut, but as I 
had reason to believe that some further discoveries might still be made, Mr; Beglar and 
myself visited the place a third time, and once more thoroughly explored the whole 
neighbourhood. The remains of the corner pillar of one of the missing gateways were 
then -discovered together with several fragments. These are not included in the plates ; 
but I may mention that the story represented on the pillar was almost certainly the 
celebrated Wessantara Jdtalca. About two thirds of each face have been cut away, but in 
the remaining portion of one of the scenes there is a four-horse chariot with a boy and 
girl being led by the hand, which leave no doubt in my mind that these are intended for 
the two children of Prince Wessantara. 

This last visit proved of value in another way, which, though not quite unexpected, 
serves to show how judicious was the course which I took for the acquisition and 


despatch of these valuable sculptures to Calcutta. When Professor Childers heard of 
the intention to get these sculptures removed to a place of safety, he wrote, " It is 
" impossible to read General Cunningham's most interesting account of these sculptures 
" without a sigh of regret that they should be so far beyond the reach of our inspection. 
" I hear of a proposal to remove them from Bharhut. The scheme carries with it a certain 
" aroma of Vandalism (fancy carting away Stonehenge !)."^ I am willing to accept the 
aroma since I have saved all the more important sculptures. Of those that were left 
behind every stone that luas removable has since been " carted away " by the people for building 
purposes. So inveterate is this practice in India that Babu Rajendra Lai, when he first 
heard of the Bharhut discoveries, boldly addressed the Government of India, suggesting 
that the sculptures should be removed to a place of safety to prevent the people from 
carrying them ofi'. At my request the whole of the sculptures were liberally presented to 
Government by the Raja of Nagod, in whose territory Bharhut stands, and I am happy 
to say that ^hey have arrived safely in Calcutta, where the fine large view of the famous 
Jetavana monastery, given in Plate LYII., was kindly taken for me by Captain Water- 
house. This view will show that the sculptures have not suffered in their long travels of 
600 miles. In his letter already quoted Professor Childers expressed a " hope that the 
" sculptures may find their way to the India Office [ia London] instead of being 
" consigned to the peaceful oblivion of an Indian Museum." In this hope I should 
most cordially agree were I not afraid that they might be consigned to the still more 
oblivious vaults of the British Museum, where some 10 years ago I discovered no less 
than seven Indian inscriptions in the full enjoyment of undisturbed repose, unseen, 
uncared for, and unknown. At present there is no Indian Museum in London, while 
there is one in Calcutta where the sculptures are now deposited. And there I may hope 
that they will fare better than did my Sravasti statue of Buddha in the Museum of the 
Bengal Asiatic Society. This ancient statue of Buddha, which certainly dates as early 
as the beginning of the Christian era, was placed in the midst of a herd of stuffed deer 
and antelopes, which completely hid its inscribed pedestal from view. The result was 
unfortunate, as the chief value of the statue was its ancient inscription. But perhaps 
the Naturalists, who then monopolised the direction of the Museum, may have considered 
this arrangement a highly appropriate compliment to Buddha, who in several previous 
births had been a " King of the Deer." 

Academy," 28tli November 1874. 




The village of Bharhut is situated six miles to tlie north-east of Uclialiara, and nine 
miles nearly due south of the Sutna station of the Jabalpur Eailway. It is exactly 120 
miles to the south-west of Allahabad, and rather more than halfway towards Jabalpur: 
The village belongs to the small state of Nagod, and forms the Jagir of the present 
minister, by whose family it has been held for the last 60 years. In our maps it is 
entered either simply as Bharaod, or sometimes with the addition of Ghhatri. But the 
Chhatri is a large stone on the top of the neighbouring hill of Ldl-Pahdr, and should not, 
therefore, be connected with the name of the village. 

Bharhut is said to be the site of an old city, by some named Bhaironpur, which 
extended for 12 kos, embracing Uohahara on the south. The houses were scattered; and 
all the surrounding villages of the present day are believed to have been the several 
Mahallas, or divisions of the ancient city. In proof of this the people argue that the 
same huge bricks are found all over this space, which is quite true, but they were no 
doubt all originally taken away by the people themselves from the great brick Stupa at 
Bharhut. The best proof of this origin is the fact that carved stones from the Buddhist 
Eailing of the Bharhut Stupa may be seen in most of the large villages for several kos 
around Bharhut, particularly at Uchahara, Batanmara, Pathora, and Madhogarh (or 
Patharhat). It is certain, however, that Bharhut itself was once a considerable city, as I 
found the greater part of the ground around the present village, for upwards of one mile 
in length by half a mile in breadth, covered with broken bricks and pieces of pottery. 

So little is known of the ancient geography of this part of India that it is almost 
useless to make any attempt to identify Bharhut with any one of the few places men- 
tioned by early writers. But in any attempt that is made we must not forget the happy 
position of Bharhut at the northern end of the long narrow valley of Mahiyar near the 
point where the high road from Ujain and Bhilsa to Pataliputra turns to the north 
towards Kosambi and Sravasti. That Kosambi itself was one of the usual halting places 
on the high road between Ujain and Pataliputra we have a convincing proof in the 
curious story of the famous physician Jivaka of Eajagriha. According to the legend 
Pradyota Eaja of Ujain, who was suffering from jaundice, invited Jivaka to his Court, to 
which the physician was very unwilling to proceed, as he knew that the cure of Pradyota 
who strongly disliked oil could not be effected without its use. " When the great 
" physician had seen the king, it occurred to him that he might endeavour to give the 

H 255. g 


" medicine by stealtt ; were lie to administer it openly, it might cause both his own 
" destruction and that of the king. He therefore informed him that he could effect the 
" cure of his disease ; but there was one thing that he must mention to the monarch, 
" which was that doctors are unwilling to make known to others the ingredients of which 
" their medicines are composed ; it would be necessary for him to collect all that he 
" required with his own hand, and therefore the king must give directions that he be 
" permitted to pass through any of the gates of the palace whenever he might choose. 

" Chandapprajota had four celebrated modes of conveyance: 1, a chariot called 
" O^ppcmika, drawn by slaves, that would go in one day 60 yojanas, and return ; 2, an 
" elephant called Mdldgvri, that in one day would go 100 yojanas, and return ; 3, a mule 
" called MvdaMsi, that in one day would go 120 yojanas, and return ; 4, a horse called 
" TeleJcarimilca, that would go the same distance." 

" "When the king heard the request of Jivaka, he gave him permission to use any 
" of the royal modes of conveyance, and to pass out of the palace gates at any hour of 
" the day. Of this permission he availed himself, and went hither and thither at his 
" will, now in this conveyance and then in that, so that the wonder of the citizens was 
" greatly excited. One day he brought home an abundance of medicine, which he boiled 
" in oil and poured into a dish. He then told the king that it was exceedingly powerful, 
" so that it would be requisite for him to take it at once, without tasting it or the virtue 
" would be gone. The king stopped his nose with one hand, and with the other put the 
" medicine into his mouth. At this moment Jivaka, after informing the attendants what 
" to give the king, went to the elephant hall, and mounting the elephant Baddrawati set 
" off towards Eajagriha like the wind. After going 50 yojanas he arrived at Kosambi, 
" where he remained a little to refresh himself, as he knew that the king had no army 
" that could come so quickly."^ 

In the legend of Bawari, the pwrohit or family priest of Raja Prasenajita, I find the 
names of some places on the route between TJjain and Kosambi noted as follows: 
" Ujjain (or Ujain), Grodhi, Diwisa, Walsewet, Kosambi."^ Here Diwisa is most probably 
only a corrupt reading for Vedisa or Besnagwr, near Bhilsa. We thus have Wal-8ewet left 
as the name of a city on the high road between Bhilsa and Kosambi ; but as no further 
indication of its position is given, all that can be said is that Bharhut agrees with the 
recorded position of Wal-Sewet, and as it was certainly a place of some consequence in 
the time of Asoka, it was most probably in existence as early as the time of Buddha. 

In Ptolemy's map of this part of India the names are very few, and of these the only 
ones that can be identified with absolute certainty are Ozme, or Ujain, and Madwa vel 
Deorrnn, or the holy city of Mathwa. We have also the rivers Granges and Jumna, and 
the capital Palibothra. Two rivers join the Granges on the south ; one is without name, 
but as the town of Tamasis is placed on its bank it must almost certainly be the Tamasa, 
or Tons ; the other is called the Sona, and as it joins the Ganges just above Palibothra it 
is beyond all doubt the Sona or Son River of the present day. Now taking a nearly 
straight line from Ozene to Palibothra I find the following names : Osta, 8oara, Adisathra, 

1 Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, pp. 244-45. There seems to be some mistake in the elephant's name ;- 
Malagiri was the famous elephant of AjS,tasatru, which he intoxicated with arrack for the purpose of killing 

2 Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, pp. 333-34. 


Agara, Bradama, Bardaotis, and Sigalla. The first four I would identify with Aslita, 
Sihor, Vedisa (Besnagar close to Bhilsa), and Sagar. Bradama may be Bilhari, and 
BardaoUs, as I have already suggested, may be Bharhut. Sigalla, which Ptolemy places 
on the left bank of the Sona near its junction with the Granges, may be Bkachakra, or the 
modern Ara (Arrah of maps.) Bardaotis and Sagabaza are the only two cities of the 
BolmgcB, who might readily be identified with the Bhagelas if we could be certain that 
they occupied this part of the country at so early a date. 

There is one more name which in the total absence of any more certain record, one 
is glad to catch at, as it is just possible that it may be the same name under a somewhat 
different form. In the Tibetan Dulva it is related that a certain Sakya named Shampaka 
on being banished from Kapila, was granted by Sakya, " in an illusory manner, some hairs 
" of his head, some nail-pairings, and teeth." He went to a country called Bagud or 
Vagud, where he was made king, and built a Stwpa (in Tibetan Ohhorten) over the holy 
relics, which was called " the fane or chapel of Shampaka."^ Perhaps Ptolemy's Sagahaza 
may have some connexion with Shampaka, or Sabaga, as I believe a Greek would have 
written the name. 

In the present day the joint name for the two districts of Nagod and Uchahara is 
Bharme, of which no one can give any explanation. It seems probable, however, from 
the long inscription on the Bast G-ateway of the Bharhut Stupa that the Stupa itself was 
situated " in the kingdom of Sugana " {Sugana rdje). Now this name, in spite of the 
difference of spelling, we can hardly keep ourselves from identifying with the ancient 
Srughna or Sughcma, which was situated on the upper course of the Jumna, and extended 
along both banks of the river from the foot of the hills to some unknown distance. In 
the time of Hwen Thsang Srughua was reputed to have a circuit of 6,000 li or 1,000 
miles,^ and as it was limited by the Granges on the east, by the kingdom of Satadru on 
the west, and by high mountains on the north, it must have extended far to the south. 
But in this direction lay the equally large district of Sthaneswara, or Thanesar. Perhaps 
the latter may have been confined to the west of the Jumna, while Srughna included the 
whole of the Grangetic Doab from the foot of the hiUs down to Mirat, and perhaps as far 
as Baran or Bulandshahar. But even with this extension the frontier of Srughna proper 
would have been about 450 miles distant from Bharhut. But it is not likely that there 
were two countries of this name ; and I see no more difficulty in Raja Dhanabhuti of 
Srughna holding possessions on the banks of the Tons, than in the Rahtors of Kanoj 
holding possessions on the banks of the Son. I accept, therefore, as an undoubted fact, 
the sovereignty of the Raja of Srughna over Bharhut, and with it must be included the 
intervening provinces of Mathura, Kanoj, Grwalior, and Mahoba. 

At a later date we know that it must have belonged to the wide dominions of the 
Grupta dynasty, whose inscriptions have been found at Garhwa, Eran, and Udayagiri. 
During the rule of that powerful family, the country around Bharhut would seem to have 
fallen into the hands of petty chiefs, as a number of copper-plate inscriptions have been 
found within 12 miles of the Stupa referring to two different families who were content 
with the simple title of Maharaja. These inscriptions range in date from 156 to 214 of 
the era of the Gruptus, or from A.D. 350 to 408. Somewhat more than two centuries 

1 Csoma de Koros, Analysis of Dulva, in Bengal Asiatic Researches, XX., 88. 

2 Julien's Hwen Thsang II., 215. 

B 2 


later Bharhut was under Harsha Vardhana of Kanoj as lord paramount, but it is almost 
certain that tte district had also a petty chief of its own. After the death of Harsha the 
B%hels and Chandels rose to power, the former ruling in Bandhogarh, the latter in 
Khajurdho, Mahoba, and Kalinjjar. 

In addition to the magnificent stone railing of the old Stupa, there are the remains 
of a mediseval Buddhist Yihara, with a colossal statue, and several smaller Buddhist 
figures which cannot be dated much earlier than 1000 A.D. It seems probable, therefore, 
that the exercise of the Buddhist religion may have been carried on for nearly 15 centuries 
with little or perhaps no interruption. Everywhere the advent of the Muhammadans 
gave the final blow to Buddhism, and their bigotry and intolerance swept away the few 
lingering remains which the Brahmans had spared. 


When I first visited Bharhut in the end of November 1873 I saw a large flat-topped 
mound, with the ruins of a small Buddhist Yihar, and three pillars of a Buddhist Bailing, 
with three connecting rails or bars of stone, and a coping stone covering them, besides a 
single gateway pillar which once supported the toran or ornamental arch of the entrance.^ 
The three pillars were more than half buried in the ground ; but there were three inscrip- 
tions still visible ; one on the gateway pillar, the second on the first pillar of the railing, 
and the third on the coping stone. To the north I found some fragments of a pillar, as 
well as a piece of coping, but they had evidently been disturbed. On the south side, 
however, I was more fortunate, as I discovered some pillars of that entrance after a few 
hours digging, and as one . of these proved to be the corner pillar of the south-west 
quadrant I was able to obtain an accurate measurement of the chord of the quarter circle 
of railing by stretching a tape to the first pillar of the south-east quadrant. This distance 
was 62 feet 6 inches, which gives an interior diameter of 88 feet 4^ inches for the stone 
railing. I then tried to ascertain something about the Stupa itself, but there was 
nothing left in the middle of the mound except a mass of rubbish formed chiefly of 
earth and broken bricks. I made a wide excavation in the middle of this heap, but 
without any result save the finding of a number of rough blocks of stone which had 
formed a part of the foundation of the brick Stupa. I then made two excavations from 
the stone railing inwards towards the Stupa — and in both places I found that the 
terraced flooring ceased abruptly at 10 feet 4 inches. This point was therefore the 
edge of the base of the Stupa, which was consequently 67 feet 8^ inches in diameter. 
Afterwards, while excavating the railing, I found numerous specimens of the bricks of 
which the Stupa had been built. Most of them were plain, and square in shape, and of 
large size 12 X 12 X 3^ inches ; but there were others of much larger size, of which I 
could obtain only fragments from 5 to 6 inches in thickness. 

On my second visit to Bharhut, in company with my assistant Mr. Beglar, the whole 
of the space inside the railing was excavated to a width of from 12 to 15 feet. This 
extensive digging brought to light the sole remaining portion of the Stupa, on the S.B. 
face, where the rubbish had been accumulated over it. The portion remaining was a 
mere fragment, 6 feet in height, by about 10 feet in length at bottom. It was entirely 
covered with a coat of plaster on the outside. The lower half was quite plain, but the 

1 See Plates XI. and XII. for two views of these remains. 


upper half was ornamented with, a succession of triangular-shaped recesses, narrow at 
bottom and broad at top, formed by setting back a few of the facing bricks. I conclude 
that these recesses were intended for lamps. The sides of each recess were formed in 
two steps, so that each would hold five lights. These recesses were nearly 13|- inches 
broad at top and 4^ inches at bottom, and from 8^ to 9 inches apart. Consequently 
there would have been 120 recesses in the whole circumference of 212f feet. Bach row 
would therefore have held 600 lights for an illumination. But as each row of these 
recesses would have given three lines of lights, and as there were several rows of 
recesses the illumination would have taken the form of a diamond-shaped network of 
lights covering the whole of the lower part of the Stupa up to the spring of the dome. 

The present village of Bharhut, which contains upwards of 200 houses, is built 
entirely of the bricks taken from the Stupa. The removal of bricks continued down to a 
late date, and I was told that a small box (dibiyd) was found in the middle of the brick 
mound, and made over to the Eaja of Nagod. This must have been a Eelic casket ; but 
my further inquiries were met by persistent ignorance, both as to, its contents and as to 
whether it was still in the possession of the Raja. 

According to the information which I received from the present Jagirdar, the site of 
the Stupa was entirely covered with a thick jangal so late as 60 years ago, when his 
family first got possession of the estate. The stone railing is said to have been then 
nearly perfect. This perhaps is doubtful, as the castle of Batanraara, which contains 
several of the Bharhut stones, is said to be more than 200 years old. But when the 
wholesale removal of the Stupa was once begun, part of the railing of the north-east and 
north-west quadrants on the side towards the village would have been first pulled down, 
and afterwards gradually removed. With the exception, however, of the rail bars, which 
weigh from 1^ to 2 cwt. each, the greater part of the railing, consisting of pillars and 
coping stones, was too heavy for convenient removal. Several of them were accordingly 
split lengthwise by regular quarrymen. Some of these split pieces yet remain on the 
ground, and amongst them there is one coping stone showing a row of quarrymen' s holes 
or drifts along the top, but which is still unsplit. From this it would appear that the 
process of general spoliation may have been suddenly stopped, perhaps at the time when 
the present Jagirdar's ancestor first got possession. This is also Mr. Beglar's opinion, 
who thus writes, " The cause of the sudden stoppage is doubtless the granting of the 
" land on which these ruins stand in Jkgir to the ancestor of the present holder, a poor 
" Brahman, who naturally would not allow the Thakur of Batanmara to carry off 
" building materials lying on his land without payment. And being probably too poor 
" to be able to split and move the heavy stones, he was obliged to content himself with 
" pulling down the Stupa, and carrying off the bricks to build his own house. To this 
" circumstance, as I believe, we are indebted for the preservation of what still remains 
" of this once magnificent Stupa." 

While the Stupa was being excavated on the side towards the village, the rubbish, 
consisting of a great mass of broken bricks and earth, was thrown out to the south-west 
and south-east, on the sides away from the village. The weight of this rubbish at last 
threw down these two quadrants of the railing, as I found that the pillars had fallen 
outwards with most of the rail bars still sticking in their socket holes. The rains of 
many successive years gradually spread a mass of earth over them, until they were 
effectually buried to a depth of from 5 to 8 feet. 


Althougli only a fragment a few feet in length, now remains of the Stupa itself we 
know from the pavement that its shape was circular, and its general appearance we learn 
from the bas-reliefs of three or four Stupas which are found amongst the sculptures, all 
of which present the same common features.^ The dome was a hemisphere whicli stood 
on a cylindrical base ornamented with small recesses for lights arranged in patterns. A 
bas-relief on one of thie longer rails, found at Uchahara, gives a good representation of 
the cylindrical base, with the addition of a regular railing in the usual position surround- 
ing the Stupa at a short distance. On the top of the hemisphere there was a square 
platform, also decorated with a Buddhist railing, which supported the crowning Umbrella, 
with, streamers and garlands suspended from its rim. Large flowers also spring from the 
top as well as from the base of the square summit, and a cylindrical ornament is hung in 
undulating folds completely round the hemisphere. 

The great stone railing whicli surrounded the Stupa had four openings towards the 
four cardinal points. It was thus divided into four quadrants, each of whicli consisted 
of 16 pillars joined by three cross-bars and covered by a massive stone coping. From 
the left side of each, entrance the railing was extended outwards for two pillar spaces so 
as to cover the direct approach to the Stupa. With these four return railings of the 
entrances the whole railing forms a gigantic Bwastiha or mystic cross, which was no 
doubt the actual intention of the designer.^ 

The railing thus contained 20 pillars in each quadrant or 80 in the whole circle, 
including the returns at the four entrances. But on each side there was an ornamental 
arch, called Toran, supported on two curiously shaped pillars, which are formed of a 
group of four octagons joined together, and crowned by four distinct bell capitals.'' 
These four capitals are covered by a single abacus on which rests a large massive 
capital formed of two winged lions and two winged bulls. One of these curious pillars 
was still standing on the south side of the east entrance, and the excavations brought 
to light the lower half of the second still standing in its original position, the upper 
half having been broken oflF and carried away. The mutilated capital of the second with 
four winged bulls was also found in clearing away the rubbish lying in the entrance ; but 
only a few fragments were discovered of the horizontal stone beams which must have 
covered these pillars, and which form such a remarkable feature of the similar entrances 
to the Sanchi Stupa. 

But in the walls of a garden tank, one mile to the westward, I discovered the broken 
end of a stone beam, which from its dimensions would exactly fit the capitals of the 
gateway pillars. The end of the beam, which is straight and heavy in the Sanchi 
examples, is here sloped downwards, and a spiral is formed not unnaturally of the curled 
tail of a crocodile.* Three other crocodile ends of beams were found afterwards in 
excavating the ruins of the Bast Gateway as well as a middle portion of the lowermost 

Other portions of the Torcm or upper part of the gateway were subsequently 
discovered. Of these the principal piece was found built into the wall of the castle at 

1 See Plates XTII. and XXXI. for good specimens of Stupas. 

2 See Plate III. for the plan of the railing ; and Plate V. for that of the gateways. 

3 See Plates VI., X., XI., and XII. 

* See Plates VI. and IX, The three specimens in the latter plate are one-sixth. 


Batanmdra.^ This piece formed nearly the whole of one face of the middle beam of the 
Toran. The Thakur of Batanmara kindly permitted me to take it out of the -wall. The 
sculptured face presents a central throne with a clump of bambu trees behind, to which 
two leonine animals are approaching, one each side. The animal on the right has a human 
head and that on the left a bird's head, but the two in the middle are true lions with huge 
open mouths. All have thick manes regularly arranged in two rows of stiff tufts. This 
face of the beam is complete with the exception of a very small piece at the left end, so 
that nothing is lost except the hind quarters of the bird-headed lion. 

The fragment of the other Toran beam, which was found in excavating the rubbish 
in front of the East Grateway is unfortunately short ; but as it presents both faces of the 
beam, the whole can be restored without any diflS.culty. This beam represented a 
procession of elephants — two on each side of the centre, where I presume there must have 
been a banian tree with a throne — corresponding to the bambu tree on the other beam. 

Prom these two fragments I infer that the Torcm consisted of three beams, as in all 
the gateways of the Sanchi Tope. My reasons for coming to this conclusion are as 
follows : — 

1. The lion beam is pierced, loth above cmd below, with a series of small mortice holes, 
11 in number, for the reception of the tenons of other portions of the Toran. This beam 
must therefore have been a middle one. 

2. The short portion of elephant beam shows some mortice holes alove but none 
helow. Accordingly this must have been the lowermost beam. 

3. The left-hand lower fragment of the great pinnacle of the gateway shows a 
portion of a very Iwrge tenon below, which must have had a corresponding mortice hole 
in the upper side of the beam on which it stood.^ It could not therefore have been 
placed on the lion beam, and consequently there must have been a third beam, of which 
unfortunately not a single fragment was discovered. 

The projecting ends of the Toran beams have already been described as composed of 
open-mouthed crocodiles with curled tails. The square part of the beam, between the 
curved centre and the crocodile end, was ornamented with a Stupa on one side and a 
temple or shrine on the other.^ 

Of the square block, or dado, which was placed between the Toran beams and 
immediately over the pillar, no complete example was found. But from an examination 
of a number of fragments I have been able to restore this member of the Toran with 
certainty. It presented a face of three Persepolitan half -pillars standing on a Buddhist 
railing, with large lotus flowers in the spaces between the pillars. A specimen wiU be 
found in the same plate with the ends of the Toran beams. 

The long spaces between the central curved parts of the Toran beams would appear 
to have been filled with a number of small balusters and pillar statues placed alternately. 
Many fragments of these were dug up, some of which were found to fit one another. 
The pieces were accordingly glued together, and as both their tops and bottoms were 
sloped i^'was clear that they must have stood upon the curved Toran beams. On 
placing them along the lion beam it was found that the two kinds of balusters must 
have been placed alternately, as their tenons were of somewhat different sizes, and woidd 
only fit into the alternate mortice holes. Their height also was found to fit exactly 

1 See Plate Vin. » See Plate VH. » See Plate IX., figs. 1 and 2. 



with the distance between the curved beams as determined by the size of the square 
block, or dado, above described. I have accordingly arranged them in this alternate order 
in the accompanying Plate.^ These little balusters are of considerable interest, as their 
sculptured statues are much superior in artistic design and execution to those of the 
railing pillars. They are further remarkable in having Arian letters engraved on their 
bases or capitals, a peculiarity which points unmistakably to the employment of Western 
artists, and which fully accounts for the superiority of their execution. The letters found 
are p, s, a, and b, of which the first three occur twice.^ Now, if the same sculptors 
had been employed on the railings, we might confidently expect to find the same 
alphabetical letters used as private marks. But the fact is just the reverse, for the 
whole of the 27 marks found on any portions of the railing are Indian letters. The only 
conclusion that I can come to from these facts is that the foreign artists who were 
employed on the sculptures of the gateways were certainly not engaged on any part of 
the railing. I conclude, thei'efore, that the Eaja of Sugana, the donor of the gateways, 
must have sent his own party of workmen to make them, while the smaller gifts of pillars 
and rails were executed by the local artists. 

I have ventured to restore the pinnacles which crowned the Bast Gateway from the 
existing fragments, of which enough have been found to make the restoration of the 
great central symbol quite certain. This is shown in Plate VIII., where aU the restora- 
tions are given in outline. The wheel at the top has been taken from one of the 
Dharma Ohakras, as the end of the hanging garland shows that the symbol was crowned 
by a wheel. The whole symbol is of common occurrence in Buddhist sculptures and 
coins.* The smaller symbol of the Tri-ratna, or " Triple Grem Symbol," has been restored 
from a single fragment of one of the bars. The existing fragment is doubtless a small 
one, but, like the point of an elephant's trunk, it is the significant portion from which the 
whole can be restored with certainty. 

Toran is a well-known name at the present day for an ornamented archway as well 
as for the ornamental frames of wood which are placed over doors and archways at the 
celebration of weddings. Some of these have a single horizontal bar, some two, and 
others three, just like the stone Toram,s of the Sanchi Stupas. In the wedding Torans the 
ornaments placed on the top are birds and flowers.* In the religious Torans the orna- 
ments would appear to have been confined to well-known Buddhist symbols, which occur 
on the old Hindu coins, and which still crown the summits of the gateways of the Sanchi 
Stupa. I have given a photograph of one of the entrances restored, with its three Toran 
beams, its baluster pillars, and its crowning symbols.® It is very much to be regretted 
that no portion of the upper Toran beam has been discovered, so that the restored 
gateway might have been made more complete. Amongst the numerous existing 
fragments I found none that could have belonged to the missing beam, which has 
accordingly been left blank in the restored elevation. 

1 See Plate Vin 

* Oce X law; » j-xj.. 

2 I think it probable that these letters may be numerals, the initials of the words pdnch = 5, sdt = 7 
= 8, and ba = 2. 

3 See Archaeological Survey of India, Vol. III., Plate X., figs. A., C, and D. 

* See Plate IV. for two of these marriage Torans, above which I have placed the Anguli Toran, or " Finger 
mark form," more commonly called Tri-pundra, which the Hindus still place on their foreheads. 

6 See Plate VI. 


The Pillars of the Gateway are 1 foot 41 inches thick, and 9 feet 7^ inches high ; the 
four grouped capitals with their abacus are each 1 foot If inches high, and the large 
single capital 1 foot 10|; inches, making the total height of the Pillars 12 feet 7^ inches.^ 
With its three Toran beams, or architraves, each gateway must have been upwards of 
20 feet in height without its crowning symbols. 

The coping, or continuous architrave, which crowned the circle of Pillars, is formed 
6f massive blocks of stone, each spanning two intercoluminations. The blocks are 
upwards of 7 feet in length, with a height of 1 foot 10^ inches, and a thickness of 1 foot 
8 inches. They are secured firmly to each other by long tenons fitting into corre- 
sponding mortises, and to the tops of the pillars by a stout tenon on each, which fits a 
socket on the under side of the coping stone.^ Each block is of course slightly curved to 
suit the circumference of the circle, and this curvature must have added considerably to 
the stability of the Railing ; for as each set of three tenons formed a triangle, each coping 
stone became an efficient tie to keep the three Pillars on which it was set in their places. 

The total length of the coping, including the returns at the four entrances, was 
330 feet, the whole of which was most elaborately and minutely sculptured, both inside 
and outside. As before mentioned only one coping stone now remains in situ, resting on 
the three Pillars of the south-east quadrant, which abutted on the Eastern G-ateway. But 
no less than 15 other coping stones have been found in the excavations out of an original 
total of 40, so that exactly three-fifths of this most important part of the Sailing is at 
present missing. My second season's operations failed to bring to light any of the 
missing stones, although several fragments were recovered. The value and importance 
of this coping will be at once acknowledged, when I mention that amongst the sculptures 
which adorn the inner face there are no less than nine Jdtalcas, or legends of previous 
births of Buddha, with their titles imscribed over them. But besides these Jatakas there are 
no less than 10 other scenes with their names labelled above them, and about double that 
number of uninscribed scenes, some of which are easily identified ; such for instance as 
^Q Asadrisa JdtaTca, OT Xegendi of Buddha when he was the Prince Asadrisa;* and the 
Dasaratha Jdtaha, or legend of Dasaratha, including the exile of Eama and the visit of 
Bharata to his hermitage.* There is also the story of Baja Jamdka, and the Princess 
Sivala Devi, both of whose names are duly labelled above them. These human scenes 
usually alternate, with bas-reliefs of various fruits or female ornaments, all boldly 
designed, and generally well carved. 

At the end of the coping stone which faced the visitor as, he approached each of the 
four entrances there was a boldly carved Lion, with a curly mane and long bushy tail, 
sitting on his haunches. The remains of three of these Lion statues were found, but all 
were unfortunately broken, and the head of only one of them was discovered.^ Next to 
the Lion, on both the inner and outer faces of the coping, there is a kneeling Elephant, 
from whose mouth issues a long undulating stem, which continues to the end of the 
quadrant, and divides the face, of the coping by its undulations into a number of small 
panels, each of which is filled with sculptures. On the inner face some have flowers and 
fruits, some necklaces and earrings, and other personal ornaments, while the rest are 

1 See Plate IV. 

* See Plate IV. for the arrangement of these 
tenons and mortises. 

3 See Plate XXVII., fig. 13. 
* See Plate XXVII., fig. 14. 
s See Plate XXXIX., figs. 1 and 2. 


occupied with the Jdtakas and other scenes which have been noticed above. On the outer 
face all the spaces marked off by the undulations are filled with repetitions of the same 
elaborate representation of a fuU blown lotus flower.^ This broad line of bas-reliefs is on 
both faces finished by two rich borders, the lower one consisting of a continuous row of 
bells. The carvings are bold and deep ; and where not injured by actual breakage, they 
are still as sharp and as perfect as when first set up. 

The Pilh/rs of the Bharhut Bailing are monoliths of the same general pattern as 
those of other Buddhist Railings. They are called thdbho throughout; the invariable 
ending of the record of a " Pillar gift being either thdbho domam or ddmam thdbho. The 
word is the Pali form of the Sanskrit Stambha, a pillar. They are 7 feet 1 inch in height, 
with a section of 1 foot lOJ inches face for sculpture, by 1 foot 2^ inches side for the 
mortises of the Rail-bars.* The comer pillars at the entrance are 1 foot lOJ inches 
square, which is the very same section as that of the Railing Pillars of the great Sinchi 
Stupa. The Bharhut Pillars are, however, 1 foot less in height. The edges of all of 
them, except the comer Pillars, are slightly bevelled on both faces, and they are orna- 
mented, after the usual manner of Buddhist Railings, by a round boss or full medallion 
in the middle, and by a half medallion at top and the same at bottom. All of these 
medallions are filled with elaborate sculpture, chiefly of lotus flowers, or of flower com- 
positions. But there are also several of animals, and a considerable number of scenes 
taken from Buddhist legend and history. A few have single figures either of Yakshas or 
Yakshinis, or of Devatas or Naga Rajas,' and in one instance of a soldier. . Several of 
these single figures unfortunately have no inscriptions by which to identify them. 

Amongst the sculptured scenes of the Pillars there are several Jdtakas with their 
titles incribed above them.* The conception of Maya Devi, with the approach of the 
White Elephant is also suitably labelled.^ There is besides a curious view of the Tikwtika, 
which seems to represent the world of Serpents and Elephants, with its name duly 
inscribed above it.* And lastly there are representations of the Bodhi trees of six 
different Buddhas with their respective names attached to them.^ The whole of these 
scenes will be described hereafter in a detailed account of the sculptures themselves. 

The scalloped or bevelled edges of the Pillars are also sculptured with various 
ornaments, which add greatly to the decorative enrichment of the whole Railing. These 
consist chiefly of flowers and fruits with human figures, both male and female, standing 
on the flowers, with their hands either in an attitude of devotion, or reaching upwards to 
the fruits. On some Pillars the flowers bear Elephants, winged. Horses, Monkeys, or 
Peacocks, while Parrots and Squirrels hang from the branches and nibble the fruit.* 

The omamentation of the comer Pillars of the entrances is quite different from that 
of the others. The Pillars of the inner comers generally bear figures of Yakshas and 
Yahshims, Devatas, and Ndga Bdjas, to whom was entmsted the guardianship of the four 
entrances. Thus at the North Gate there are figures of Kupko Yakho, or Kuvera King of 
the Yakshas, and of Ghcmdd YakU; while at the South Gate there are figures of Ghulakoka 

1 See Plate XL. for specimens of both faces outside and inside. 
* See Plate IV. for plan and elevation of the railing. 

3 See Plates XXI,, XXII., and XXIII. 
* See Plates XXV. and XXVI. 
« See Plate XXVIII., fig. 2. 

» See Plate XXVni., fig. 1. 

' See Plates XXIX. and XXX. 

* See Plates XI. and XII. for these ornaments. 


Devatd and of the Ndga B^a Ghakmako? On the two outer comer Pillars there is a quite 
different arrangement. The faces of these Pillars are divided into three compartments or 
panels by horizontal bands of Buddhist Railing. Bach of these panels is fiUed with 
sculpture representing some scene or legend in the history of Buddha. Several of these 
are extremely interesting, as the inscriptions attached to them enable us to identify the 
different stories with the most absolute certainty. Amongst these curious records of the 
past is a scene representing the procession of King Ajatasat on his elephant to visit the 
shrine of Buddha's foot prints, which is appropriately labelled Ajdta 8atu Bhagwvato vamdate, 
that is " Aj^tasatru worships (the foot prints) of Buddha."^ Another interesting scene^ 
which represents the Naga E&ja Eripatra kneeling at the foot of the Bodhi tree, is 
labelled in a similar manner Erapato Ndga Baja Bhagavato vandate, or " Erapatra N4ga 
E4ja worships (the Bodhi tree) of Buddha."* Another scene of great interest represents 
the Raja Prasenajita in a four-horse chariot proceeding to pay his devotions at the Shrine 
of the Buddhist Wheel Symbol, which is labelled Bhagavato Dhama Ghaham, or " Buddha's 
Wheel of the law."* Other scenes present us with views of the famous Bodhi tree of 
Ssikya Muni, and of the Banian tree of Kasyapa Buddha being worshipped by wild 
Elephants, both sculptures being duly inscribed with their proper titles.^ Lastly, there is 
a scene representing a dance of Apsarases, with the names of four of the most famous of 
those heavenly nymphs attached to the four dancers.* 

Altogether 35 Pillars, more or less perfect, have been found on the site of the Stupa, 
along with numerous fragments of others. Six other Pillars were discovered at the 
neighbouring village of Batanmara and no less than eight more at Pathora, making a 
total of 49, or considerably more than one half of the original number of 80. I think it 
is possible that some more Pillars may yet be found about Pathora ; but they will most 
probably be split down the middle, and their sides out off, to fit them as beams for 
present buildings. Four of the eight which have already been seen at Pathora were 
found in this state. 

The Stone^ Bars or Rails are of the same pattern as those of the Buddhist Railings at 
Buddha Gaya, Bhilsa, and Mathura. They measure 1 foot llf inches in length by 
1 foot 10^ inches in breadth, with a thickness of 6 inches.^ The dimensions of the Bars 
of the great Sanchi Railing are 2 feet 1^ by 2 feet 1^ by 9^ inches. The Bharhut Rails 
are therefore very nearly of the same size, the chief difference being in their inferior 
thickness, which makes the curved Surface very much flatter. The Rails have circular 
bosses or medallions on each side, which are sculptured with various subjects similar to 
those of the Pillar medallions. Amongst them, however, there are very few Jatakas.^ 
But they present us with several humorous scenes, and with a very great variety of 
flowered ornaments of singular richness and beauty.® There is only one specimen of a 
geometrical pattern, which will be found in the photograph of the Railing outside." 

The total number of Rail-bars in the complete Railing was 228. Of these about 80 
have been found, of which six are at the neighbouring town of Uchahara. As they 

1 See Plates XXI., XXII., and XXIIL 

2 See Plate XVI., fig. 3. 

3 See Plate XIV., fig. 3. 
* See Plate XIII., fig. 3. 
6 See Plate XV., fig. 3. 

8 See Plate XV., fig. 1 ; and Plate XVI., fig. 1. 
^ See Plate IV. for section and elevation. 

^ The Latuwa Jdtaka is on one of the Rail-bars. 

9 See Plates XXXIII. to XXXVIII. 
i« See Plate XL 

c 2 


weigli only about two maunds each, their removal was easy, as a single bullock would 
have been sufficient to carry off one Rail, whilst a camel might have taken three. 

The Rail-bars of the entrance, owing to the wider intercolumination of the Pillars, 
were considerably longer than those of the main Railing, the side openings being 2 J feet 
and the front openings S^ feet wide. The 19-inch round medallion which was sufficient 
to fill the surface of a 23-inch rail, would appear to have been considered too meagre for 
the decoration of the longer Rail of 30 to 40 inches. The round medallion was therefore 
changed to an oblong panel 25 inches in length which covered the greater part of the 
surface. I have seen only two of these long Rails, one of which I found in the village of 
Bharhut, and the other in the neighbouring town of TJchahara. The latter has been 
ingeniously split down the middle, and the two sculptured faces are now utilised as th.e 
ornamental capitals of the Pillars of a small Dharmsala erected by a Gosain. The 
sculptures of these long Rails present only religious scenes, such as the worship of the 
Stupa, the Bodhi Tree, and the Dharma Chakra.^ 

From several of the inscriptions we learn that these Rail-bars were appropriately 
called SiicM, or " needles," a name that must have been bestowed upon them from the 
duty which they had to perform of threading together the Pillars by passing through 
their mortises or eyelet holes. One of these inscriptions may be seen in the sketch of the 
Latuwa Jdtalca, which is also inscribed with the name of the donor, ending with the words 
ddnam suchi* Other examples give sucM ddnam,^ which is the more common form. It 
seems probable that in the former cases the inscriptions originally ended with ddmmn, and 
that the nature of the gift was afterwards added at the request of the donor. There are 
several similar instances of this kind of addition in the " Pillar gifts," which read dcmam 
thabJio, as well as thabho ddnam. 

Between the magnificent Railing and the Stupa there was a clear space of 10 feet 
4 inches wide for the perambulation of the pilgrims round the sacred building. The 
whole of this space was covered with a thick flooring of lime plaster, which has lasted 
well even to the present day. The outer edge of the floor was finished by a line of 
curved kerb stones, cut exactly to the circumference of the inner circle of the Railing ; 
and the pillars were set against the kerb stones which just touched the diameter of the 
lower half medallions. The foot of each Pillar, which was quite rough, rested on a 
square block laid directly on the earth. The terraced floor was continued all round the 
outside of the Railing for a width of several feet. Here some traces of brick walls were 
found, as well as some Votive Stupas of stone. These scattered foundations would 
appear to have been the plinths of Votive Stupas and other small objects. 

The excavation also brought to light the remains of a second stone Railing of much 
smaller dimensions than the Inner Railing. Only two Pillars were found, and only four 
pieces of the curved stone plinth in which the Pillars were fixed. But no less than 
10 specimens of the curved coping stones have been exhumed, and all in positions outside 
the line of Inner Railing, which shows that they must have belonged to an Outer line of 
Railing. These coping stones are quite plain, but there is no mistaking their purpose. 

1 See Plate XXXI, for these four specimens. 

a See Plate XXVI., fig. 1. For other examples of the same form see the inscriptions, Plate LV Nos 9 
and 12, and Plate LVI., No, 28, '' 

3 See Plate LV., Nos, 16 and 17, and Plate LVI., Nos, 30, 31, 32, 41, 46, 53, 61, and 64. 


At first I took them for outer kerb stones, but the mortises on their under sides showed 
that they must have formed part of the coping of an Outer Bailing.^ The Pillars of the 
Great Railing in falling outwards overwhelmed the Outer Eailing wherever it was still 
standing, as several pieces of the outer coping were found beneath the fallen Pillars of 
the Inner Railing. There is, however, good reason to believe that the greater part of the 
Outer Railing had already been removed long before the excavation of the Stupa in the 
last century, which caused the overthrow of the Great Railing. The only two Pillars yet 
found were discovered in two of the adjacent villages where they have been worshipped 
for many years on account of the figures sculptured upon them. There must have been 
about 240 of these small Pillars, and it is difficult to believe that so large a number could 
have been utterly destroyed. They were most probably split into two pieces, and then 
used as building stones with the sculptured faces turned inwards. The entire disappear- 
ance of the Rail-bars is also very mysterious, as there must have been about 750 of them 
— each being 18 inches long and 7 inches broad. Of the two Pillars that have been 
found one belongs to a corner position and the other to a middle place. They are both 
2 feet 1 inch in height with a breadth of 7 inches. As the plinth was 7 inches in height, 
and the coping the same, the total height of the Railing was only 3 feet 3 inches. The 
corner Pillar has a single human figure on each of the two outer faces, and the middle 
Pillar has a similar figure on its outer face. The figures are standing fully draped with 
their hands joined in respectful devotion. I believe, therefore, that both of these Pillars 
must have belonged to one of the entrances, and that the figures were placed on the 
adjacent Pillars as guardians of the Gateways, while the Pillars of the Railing itself were 
perhaps quite plain. 

Respecting this Outer Railing I have a suspicion that its erection was necessitated by 
the gradual accumulation of the remains of many buildings around the Great Railings 
and consequently that it must be of a much later age. But however this may be, it is 
quite certain that the accumulation led at last to the necessity of adding a flight of steps, 
at least on the western side, where I found a solid stone ladder 3 feet 1 inch in width. 
As this ladder still possesses seven steps of 10 inches each, the height of the accumulated 
rubbish, from which the visitor had to descend into the area of the Stupa Court, was 
certainly not less than 6 feet. "Where this ladder was placed can now only be guessed, 
and my conjecture is that it probably occupied the actual entrance between the two lines 
of Railing as shown in the accompanying Plate.^ 

Amongst the fragments collected from the excavations there are pieces of two stone 
Pillars of different dimensions, and with a different arrangement of the medallions from 
those of the Great Railing of the Stupa. Both of these pieces are inscribed, but the 
letters do not differ from those of the other inscriptions except in being much thicker 
and more coarsely executed.^ The medallions are placed much closer together, within 
6^ inches, so that unless there were two whole medallions as well as two half medallions, 
these Pillars must necessarily have been much shorter than those of the Railing. But as 
the remains of one of the medallions shows a diameter of 19 inches these Pillars must 
have been of the same breadth as those of the Hailing, and therefore most probably of 
about the same height. 

1 See Plate V. for the plan, elevation, and section of this Railing. 
* See Plate V. for the conjectural positions of these ladders. 
3 See Plate LVI., fragments, figs. 19 and 20. 



I do not, however, believe that they had any connection with the Great Eailing itself, 
but that they belonged to some other distinct enclosure, which may have surrounded a 
Tree, or a Pillar, or a Dharma Ohakra. 

Their inscriptions do not throw any light upon the position which they may have 
occupied, unless the word dsana, a " throne " or " seat," may refer to the famous 
Vajrdsana, or Diamond Throne of Buddha. The inscription in which this word occurs has 
lost the first letter of each of its two lines, but they may be readily restored as follows : 

(Ba) hi hathiJca dsoma — 
{Bha)-gavato Mahad&vasa — 

It is possible, therefore, that this Pillar may have formed part of the Railing surround- 
ing a Vwjrdsan. It is certain at least that the inscription does not refer to the medallion 
below it ; firstly, because it is placed far away from it, immediately beneath the upper 
ornament ; and secondly, because enough yet remains of the medallion to show that it 
was a large lotus flower. In two other instances where the words bahuhathika are found, 
they clearly refer to the " great herd of Elephants," which appears in the sculpture. 
Here, however, they are placed immediately beneath a row of human hands, which 
suggests the probability that bahni hathika may refer to the " many hands " of the 

Similar rows of human hands are found in another sculpture, which apparently 
represents a row of four altars or seats placed inside a Temple.^ I think it very probable 
that these also are thrones or seats of the four Buddhas to whom " many hands " are 
held up in adoration. If this explanation be correct then the inscription above quoted 
must refer to the number of hands lifted up before the Throne (dsan) of Shagavata 
Mahdd&va. The Vajrdscm, or Bodhimanda as it was also called, was the name of a seat on 
which a Buddha had obtained his Buddhahood. This Throne was an object of great 
reverence, and is frequently represented in the sculptures. I believe that the middle and 
lower bas-reliefs of the Pillar on which Ajitasatu's name is inscribed present us with 
actual representations of the Vajrdscm, or Seat of Sakya Muni, with his footprints on the 
step below.^ The Throne seems also to be represented in aU three of the right-hand 
scenes of the same Pillar, under the shadow of the Bodhi tree, which was omitted in the 
other scenes for want of room. The Vajrasan of each different Buddha is also repre- 
sented under the shadow of its appropriate Bodhi tree in the special scenes which are 
inscribed with their respective names.* In two of these sculptures the seat is supported 
on Pillars, which very forcibly illustrates my suggestion that the broken Pillar with the 
inscription containing the word dscma was most probably one of the supporters of a 
Vajrdsan or Throne of Buddha. 

Before proceeding to describe the different subjects of the sculptures, I wish to say a 
few words as to the probable age of the StApa, which I have assigned to the Asoka period 
or somewhere between 250 and 200 B.C. We know with absolute certainty the shapes 
of all the letters of the alphabet used in the time of Asoka, whose date is fixed within the 
very narrow limits of error of not more than two or three years. That these characters 

1 See Plate XXXI., fig. 4. » See Plate XVI., fig. 3. i See Plates XXIX. and XXX. 


"were in general use from Kabul to the mouth of the Ganges, and from the foot of the 
Himalayas to Surashtra, we learn from the Indian legends of the coins of Pantaleon and 
Agathokles, as well as from the numerous inscriptions of Asoka himself and of Dasaratha, 
one of his successors, who reigned shortly after him, or from about B.C. 215 to 209. 

That a marked change in these characters was introduced ! before B.C. 150 is almost 
equally certain. Just four years ago a small hoard of silver coins was found in a field 
near Jwila Mukhi, which comprised five coins of the native princes Amoghabhuti, Bhd/ra 
Ghosha, and Varmmika along with some 30 specimens of the Philopator coins of ApoUodotus. 
Now the date of ApoUodotus is known within a few years, and has been fixed by myself 
as ranging from B.C. 165 to 150. As there were no other Grreek coins in the find, and 
as these particular coins of ApoUodotus are most probably his earliest mintage, whilst all 
of them were quite new and fresh, I conclude that the whole must have been buried in 
the early part of his own reign. The coins of the three Indian Princes must consequently 
be of the same age, or not later than B.C. 150. All of the letters on these coins have got 
mdtras, or heads, added to them, and several of them have assumed considerable modi- 
fications in their forms, more especially the j, the m, and the gh, which have become 
angular, while their forms are invariably round, in all the Bharhut inscriptions, exactly 
like those of the Asoka records. According to my judgment the absolute identity of the 
forms of the Bharhut characters with those of the Asoka period is proof sufficient that 
they belong to the same age. On this evidence I do not wish to fix upon any exact date, 
and I am content with recording my opinion that the alphabetical characters of the 
Bharhut inscriptions are certainly not later than B.C. 200. 

I may add also that the simple character of the piUar capitals, which are exactly the 
same as those of Asoka's own pillars, fully corroborates the early date which I have assigned 
to the Bharhut Stupa. 

I have already pointed out that Bharhut was on the high road between Ujain and 
Bhilsa in the south, and Kos&mbi and Sravasti in the north, as well as Pataliputra in the 
east. I may here add that on this line at a place called Rupnath, only 60 mUes from 
Bharhut, there is a rock inscription of Asoka himself. As he was governor of Ujain 
during his father's lifetime Asoka must often have passed along this road, on which it 
seems only natural to find the Stupas of Bhilsa, the rock inscription of Eupnath, the 
Stupa of Bharhut, and the ! Pillar of Prayaga or Allahabad ; of which two are actual 
records of his own, while [the inscriptions on the Railings of the Stupas show that they 
also must belong to his age. 

I have already also alluded to the inscription of Raja Dhanabhuti, the munificent 
donor of the Bast Gateway of the Stupa — and most probably of the other three Gateways 
also. In his inscription he caUs himself the Raja of Sugana, which is most likely intended 
for SugJma or Srughna, an extensive kingdom on the upper Jumna. I have identified the 
capital of Srughna, with the modem village of 8ugh which is situated in a bend of the 
old bed of the Jumna ^ close to the large town of Buriya. Old coins are found on this site 
in considerable numbers. In this inscription on the East Gateway at Bharhut Raja 
Dhanabhuti calls himself the son of Aga Raja and the grandson of Viswa Deva, and in 
one of the RaU-bar inscriptions I find that Dhanabhuti's son was named Vadha Pala. 
Now the name of Dhanabhuti occurs in one of the early Mathura inscriptions which has 

1 See Archaeological Survey of India, Vol. 11., p. 226. 


been removed to Aligarh.^ The stone was originally a comer piUar of an enclosure with, 
sockets for rails on two adjacent faces, and sculptures on the other two faces. The 
sculpture on the uninjured face represents Prince Siddh&rtha leaving Kapilavastu on his 
horse Kanthapa, whose feet are upheld by four Yakshas to prevent the clatter of their 
hoofs from awakening the guards. On the adjacent side is the inscription placed above 
a Buddhist Railing.^ At some subsequent period the Pillar was pierced with larger holes 
to receive a set of Rail-bars on the inscription face. One of these holes has been cut 
through the three upper lines of the inscription, but as a few letters still remain on each 
side of the hole it seems possible to restore some of the missing letters. I read the 
inscription as follows : 

1. Kapa (Dhana) 

2. BMtisa * * * Ydtsi 

3. Pui/rasa (Vadha Pa) lasa 

4. DhanabMtisa dcmrni Vedika 

5. Tor ana cha Batnagraha sa — 

6. -va Buddha pvjdye sahd mdta pi- 

7. -td hi 8aM * chatuha parishdhi. 

There can be little doubt that this inscription refers to the family of Dhanabhuti of 
Bharhut, as the name of Vdtsi putra of the Mathura pillar is the Sanskrit form of the 
Vdchhi putra of the Bharhut Pillar. This identification is further confirmed by the 
restoration of the name of Vadha Pala, which exactly fits the vacant space in the third 
line. From this record, therefore, we obtain another name of the same royal family in 
Dhanabhuti II., the son of Vadha Pala, and . grandson of Dhanabhuti I. Now in this 
inscription all the letters have got the matras, or heads, which are found in the legends 
of the silver coins of Amoghabhuti, Dara Grhosha, and Varmmika. The inscription 
cannot, therefore, so far as we at present know, be dated earlier than B.C. 150. Allowing 
30 years to a generation, the following wUl be the approximate dates of the royal family 
of Srughna : 

B.C. 300. Viswa Deva. 

270, Aga Raja. 

240. Dhanabhuti I. 

210. Vadha P^la. 

180. Dhanabhuti II. 


Now we learn from Vadha Pala's inscription, Plate LVI., No. 54, that he was only a 
Prince {Eumdra) the son of the Baja Dhanabhuti, when the Railing of the Bharhut Stupa 
was set up. We thus arrive at the same date of 240 to 210 B.C. as that previously 
obtained for the erection of the magnificent Gateways and Railing of the Bharhut Stupa. 
To a later member of this family I would ascribe the well-known coins of Raja 
Amogha-bhuti, King of the Kunindas, which are found most plentifully along the upper 
Jumma, in the actual country of Srughna. His date, as I have already shown, must be 
about B.C. 150, and he will therefore follow immediately after Dhana-bhuti II. I possess 

1 See Archffiological Survey of India, Vol, III., Plate XVI., No. 21. The gift of Dhanabhuti at Mathnra 
included a Vedika, or open building for reading, a Torana, or ornamental gateway, and a Rainagriha, or 


also two coins of Raja Bala-bhuti, who was most probably a later member of the same 
dynasty. But besides tbese I have lately obtained two copper pieces of Aga Baja, the 
father of Dhana-bhuti I. One of these was found at Sugh, the old capital of Srughna, 
and the other at the famous city of Kosambi, about 100 miles to the north of Bharhut. 

I may mention here that my reading of the name of the Kunindas on the coins of 
Amogha-bhuti was made more than ten years ago in London, where I fortunately 
obtained a very fine specimen of his silver mintage. This reading was published in the 
"Academy," 21st November 1874. I have since identified the Kunindas, or Kulmdas, as the 
name is also written, with the people of KuUndrime, a district which Ptolemy places 
between the upper courses of the Bipasis and Ganges. They are now represented by the 
Kunets, who form nearly two-thirds of the population of the hill tracts between the Bias 
and Tons Rivers. The name of Kvmdwar is derived from them ; but there can be little 
doubt that Kunawar must once have included the whole of Ptolemy's Kulindrme as the 
Kunets now number nearly 400,000 persons, or rather more than shty per cent, of the 
whole population between the Bias and Tons Eivers. They form 58 per cent, in KuUu ; 
67 per cent, in the states round about Simla, and 62 per cent, in Kunawar. They are 
very numerous in Sirmor and Bisahar, and there are still considerable numbers of them 
below the hills, in the districts of Ambala, Karnal, and Ludiana, with a sprinkling in 
Delhi and Hushiarpur. 





The subjects represented in the Bharhut sculptures are both numerous and varied, 
and many of them are of the highest interest and importance for the study of Indian 
history. Thus we have more than a score of illustrations of the legendary Jatakas, and 
some half dozen illustrations of historical scenes connected with the life of Buddha, which 
are quite invaluable for the history of Buddhism. Their value is chiefly due to the 
inscribed labels that are attached to many of them, and which make their identification 
absolutely certain. Amongst the historical scenes the most interesting are the proces- 
sions of the Eajas Ajatasatru and Prasenajita on their visits to Buddha ; the former on 
his elephant, the latter in his chariot, exactly as they are described in the Buddhist 
chronicles. Another invaluable sculpture is the representation of the famous Jetavcma 
monastery at Sr^vasti, — with its Mango tree, and temples, and the rich banker Anatha- 
pindika in the foreground emptying a cartful of gold pieces to pave the surface of the 

But besides these scenes, which are so intimately connected with the history of 
Buddhism, there are several bas-reliefs, which seem to represent portions of the history 
of Eama during his exile. There are also a few scene of broad humour in which monkeys 
are the chief actors. 

Of large figures there are upwards of 30 alto-relievo statues of Yakshas and Yakshinis, 
Devatas, and Niga Eajas, one half of which are inscribed with their names. We thus 
see that the guardianship of the North Gate was entrusted to Kuvera King of the Yakshas, 
agreeably to the teaching of the Buddhist and Brahmanical cosmogonies. And similarly 
we find that the other Grates were confided to the Devas and the Nagas. 

The representations of animals and trees are also very numerous and some of them 
are particularly spirited and characteristic. Of other objects there are boats, horse- 
chariots, and bullock-carts, besides several kinds of musical instruments, and a great 
variety of flags, standards, and other symbols of royalty. 

About one half of the full medallions of the Eail-bars and the whole of the half 
medallions of the Pillars are filled with flowered ornaments of singular beauty and 
delicacy of design, of which numerous examples are given in the accompanying plates. 
I will now describe the sculptures in detail according to the following arrangement : 

A. — Superhuman Beings. 

1. Yakshas. 

2. Devas. 

3. Nagas. 

4. Apsarases. 

B. — Human Beings. 

1. Eoyal Persons. 

2. Eeligious Persons. 

3. Eoyal and Lay Costume. 

4. Military Costume. 

5. Female Dress and Ornaments, 

6. Tattooing. 


0. — ^Animals. 
D. — Tkebs and Fruits. 


1. Jatakas, Previous Births of Buddha. 

2. Historical Scenes. 

3. Miscellaneous Scenes — inscribed. 

4. Miscellaneous Scenes — not inscribed. 
2. Humorous Scenes. 

F. — Objects op Worship. 

1. Stupas. 

2. Wheels. 

3. Bodhi Trees. 

4. Buddha-pada, or Footprints. 

5. Tri-ratna, or Triple-gem Symbol, 

Gr, — Decorative Ornaments. 

H. — Buddhist Buildings. 

1. Palaces. 

2. Pwwyasdlas, or Religious Houses. 

3. Vajrdscm Canopies. 

4. Bodhimcmda Thrones. 

5. Pillars. 

6. Ascetic Hermitages. 

7. Dwelling Houses. 

K. — Miscellaneous Objects. 

1. Vehicles. 

2. Furniture. 

3. Utensils. 

4. Musical Instruments. 

1. Yakshas. 

The most striking of all the representations of the demigods are the almost life-size 
figures of no less than six Yakshas and Yakshmis, which stand out boldly from the faces 
of the corner pillars at the different entrances to the Courtyard of the Stupa. According 
to the Buddhist cosmogony the palace of Dhritarashtra and the Gandharvas occupies the 
Bast side of the Yugandhara rocks, that of Virudha and the Kumbhandas the South, that 
of Yirupaksha and the N4gas the West, and that of Vaisravan and his Yakshas the 

D 2 


Nortli.i Two of these guardian demigods I have been able to identify witb two of tbe 
Yalcshas figured on the entrance pillars'of the Bharhut Stupa. The Pali name oiWmsrOr- 
wana, in Sanskrit Vaisravana, is a patronymic of Kwvera, the king of all the Yakshas, 
whose father was Visravas. To him was assigned the guardianship of the Northern 
quarter; and accordingly I find that one of the figures sculptured on the comer pillar 
of the Northern Gate at Bharhut is duly inscribed Kupiro YahJw, or Kuvera Yaksha. 
To Vindhaka was entrusted the guardianship of the South quarter, and accordmgly 
the image of Vvrudalco Yakho is duly sculptured on the corner pillar of the South 
Gate. With Kupiro on the North are associated AjaUlako YakTw and GJmM Yakhi, or 
Chanda Yakshini;* and with Virudaka on the South are associated Gangito Yakho and 
Ghakavdko Ndga Bdja.* The West side was assigned to Yirup^ksha; but here I find 
only SucMlama Yakho and Sirima Devatd on one pillar, and on a second the figure of 
Supdvaso Yakho. Dhritar&shtra was the guardian of the Bast side ; but unfortunately 
the two corner pillars of this Gate have disappeared. There is, however, in a field to 
the west of the Stupa a corner pillar bearing the figure of the Yakhmi Sudasava, which 
could only have belonged to the Eastern Gate. We have thus still left no less than 
six figures of Yakshas and two of YalcsMnis, which are most probably only about one-half 
of the number which originally decorated the Bharhut Railing. I may note here that 
the corner pillar of the Buddhist Bailing which once surrounded the Great Temple at 
Bauddha Gaya bears a tall figure of a Yakshini on one of the outward faces as at 

The Yakshas were the subjects of Kuvera, the guardian of the North quarter of 
Mount Meru, and the God of Riches. They had superhuman power, and were universally 
feared, as they were generally believed to be fond of devouriiag human beings. This 
must certainly have been the belief of the early Buddhists, as the legend of the Apannaka 
JdtaM is founded on the escape of Buddha, who was then a wise merchant, from the 
snares of a treacherous Yaksha, while another merchant who had preceded him in the 
same route had been devoured with all his followers, men and oxen, by the Yakshas, 
who left " nothing but their bones." I suspect that this belief must have originated 
simply in the derivation of their name Yaksha, " to eat,"® for there is nothing ferocious 
or even severe in the aspects of the Yakshas of the Bharhut sculptures. These must, 
however, have been considered as friendly Yakshas, to whom was entrusted the guardian- 
ship of the Four Gates of the Stupa. The ancient dread of their power has survived to 
the present day, as the people of Ceylon still try " to overcome their malignity by Chaunts 
and Charms."^ I think it probable also that the Jak Deo of Kun^war and Simla may 
derive its name from the ancient Yaksha or Jakh. 

Of Kuvera, the king of the Yakshas, there is frequent mention in the Buddhist books 
under his patronymic of Wessawano or Vaisravana, as on attendant an Buddha along with 
the guardian chiefs of the other three quarters. His image also is amongst those of the 

1 HarSy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 24. Also Burnouf, Le Lotus de la Bonne Loi, p. 3. Also Foucaux, 
195-288. They were called the Four Great Kings, 

a See Plate XXIII., fig. 1. 3 See Plate XXIU., fig. 3. 

* See Plate XXI., figs. 1 and 2. « Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 108. 

« See Wilson*s Vishnu Purana, p. 41, where this derivation is given. Sir William Jones, however, looked 
upon them very differently, as he translates Manu's " Yakshas," by benevolent genii. — Institutes, I., 37. 

7 Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p, 45. 


other gods, which bow down before»Budd]ia as he enters their temple.^ According to 
the Puranas Kuvera was the son of Visravas and Irdvird, and the grandson of Pulastya. 
He is therefore just as well known by his patronymics of Vaisravana and Pmilastya, 
derived from his father and grandfather as by his own name. From the Bharhut 
Sculptures we see that the power of Kupira Yalcho was as well known and fully recognised 
in the time of Asoka as in that of the Lalita Vistara and other Buddhist works. It 
seems probable, therefore, that he was one of the early demigods of the Hindus prior to 
the rise of Buddhism. I have failed to find any notice of him in the Rig Veda. But 
I believe that I have been successful in tracing him under both of his patronymics in the 
early Greek Mythology. As the god of Wealth he of course corresponds with the Greek 
Ploutos, who according to Hesiod and Diodorous was the son of lasion by Demeter.^ 
Now Kuvera was the son of Visravas by Irdvira, or the Earth, who is therefore the same 
as Demeter. He accordingly received the well-known patronymic of Vaisravana, or in 
its spoken Pali form Wessawano, which appears to be the very same name as lasion. But 
as Kuvera was likewise the grandson of Pulastya, he was also known by the patronymic 
of PoMlastya which in the spoken dialects takes the forms of Paulast and Paulat, just as 
Agastya becomes Agast and Agat, as in the well-known name of Agat Sarai. Now the 
latter form of Paulat may, I think, be taken without much hesitation as the possible 
original of the Greek Ploutos. Here, then, we see that the god of "Wealth was known to 
the Greeks under both of his Indian patronymics as early as the time of Hesiod, or about 
the eigth century B.C. But if we accept this much, we must be prepared to accept much 
more, and must admit that the demigod Kuvera, the lord of Riches, was known at least 
as early as the period of the separation of the Eastern and Western branches of the Aryan 

Regarding the general appearance of the Yakshas we are told that they resembled 
mortal men and women. That this was the popular belief is clearly shown by the well- 
known story of Sakya Sinha's first appearance at Rajagriha as an ascetic. The people 
wondered who he could be. Some took him for Brahma, some for Indra, and some for 
Vaisravana.^ This is confirmed by the figures of the Yakshas and Yakshinis in the 
Bharhut Sculptures, which in no way differ from human beings either in appearance or 
in dress. In the Lalita Vistara also Vaisravana is enumerated as one of the chiefs of the 
Kamavachara Devaloka, of which all the inhabitants were subject to sensual enjoyments *. 

In the Vishnu Purana Vaisravana is called king over kings ; but in other Puranas he 

is simply styled Kuvera, king of the Yakshas.^ His capital was called Alalca ; and so 

the banished Yaksha of Kalidasa thus addresses the cloud who is to be his messenger, 

' " you must set out for the habitations of the Yaksha chiefs, called Alaka, the palaces of 

" which glance white in the moonlight of the head of Siva, placed in the exterior 

1 Lalita Vistara, quoted by Burnouf, Introduction a rhistoire du BuddMsme Indien, p. 132. See also 
Translation o£ ditto by M. Foucaux from the Tibetan, p. 115. In the original passage the name of Kuvera is 
inserted as well as that of Vaisravana, which leads M. Foucaux to think that Vaisravana may be a different god 
from Kuvera. But this insertion of the two names is clearly a mistake, as only a little later I find the following 
passao^e " N'est-ce pas Vaisravana le Maitre des richesses," which thus places his identity with Kuvera beyond 
all doubt. 

2 Hesiod Theog, 969; Diodor V., 4. 

3 Lalita Vistara, translated by M. Foucaux from the Tibetan, pp. 228-229. 
* See Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 29. 

6 Wilson's Vishnu Purana, p. 153. He is also called king of kings by Kalidasa in his Meghduta; Sloka, 3. 


« gardens."^ Hence mount Kaimsa was also called Kwo&rdcJMla and KwverMn, or 
" Kuvera's Mil." 

The Lalita Yistara speaks of the 28 chiefs of the Yakshas,"^ apparently exclusive 
of Kuvera who must be included amongst the four great kings that are mentioned 
separately. Six names are found in the Bharhut Sculptures, and an equal number 
may be gathered from the legends in Hardy's Manual of Buddhism. But the only name 
of any note is that of Alawaka, who contended with Buddha ; and was of course over- 
come by him. During the conflict he attempted to frighten Buddha by calling out in a 
loud voice which was heard over all Jambudwipa, " I am the Yakho Alawaka." ^ His 
place of abode was a Banian tree, and he possessed a peculiar weapon called GMU which 
was as irresistible as the thunderbolt of Ind/ra, the club of Vaisravcma, or the mace of 

With reference to the name of Kmera, which means " deformed," and is said to refer 
to the mal-formation of three legs, I believe that this meaning of the word gave rise to 
the modem representations of him as three legged. But as there is no allusion ta any 
deformity m the Buddhist books, while there is a distinct testimony to the contrary 
in the story of Sakya, who possessed all the 32 points of beauty being likened to him, 
I accept the representation of him by the Bharhut Sculpture as a true portrait of the 
ancient god of the Yakshas. Perhaps the derivation of the name may be found in Eu, 
the earth, and vrmh or bri, to nourish, that is, " what is nourished by the earth," — to wit 
" gold " or wealth. But I am more inclined to accept Ku, the " earth," and vi/ra a " hero," 
as the real original, as the Yakshas would appear to be the " demigods of emih," just as the 
Nagas are the " demigods of water." 

2. Devas. 

Of the figures of Devas I have already noticed that of Sirima Devata ; but there is 
also a second of GhulaJcoJca Devatd which is joined with the Yaksha Vvmdhaka and the 
Naga Raja Ghahavdka in the guardianship of the South Gate.* There are two other 
female statues, but as they are not inscribed it is difficult to determine whether they are 
Yakshinis or Devatas. Si/rimd Devatd may be simply 8ri Maya Devi, the mother of Sakya 
Muni, or the " auspicious mother goddess." But I have a suspicion that the figure may 
be intended for the celebrated beauty named Svrvmd, the sister of the physician Jivaka. 
Her story as told by Bishop Bigandet from the Burmese chronicles is as follows : ^ 

" A famous courtesan named Sirima, sister of the celebrated physician Jivika, 
" renowned all over the country for her wit and the incomparable charms of her person, 
" wished to show her liberality to the disciples of Buddha. Every day a certaia number 
" of them went to her dwelling, to receive with their food, abundant alms. One of the 
" pious mendicants, in an unguarded moment, moved by an imholy curiosity, looked at 

1 The Meghaduta of Kalidasa, translated by Colonel OuTry. 
^ M. Foucaux's translation from Tibetan, p. 72. 

* Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 261. 

* See Plate XXIII., fig. 3, for Chulakoka, or the " Little Koka." A corner pillar at Bauddha Gaya bears 
a Yakshini in the very same position as Chanda and Chulakoka. There was also a Mahakoka Devata, or " Great 
Koka," but her statue is now at Pathora, inside the temple. 

6 Legend of the Burmese Buddha, p. 234. I have changed the spelling of the Burmese names throughout. 
The Burmese write Thirima and Dzewak, &c. 


" her, and was instantly smitten by her charms. The moral wound was widened and 
" deepened by a fortuitous occurrence. On a certain day Sirima fell sick. But she did 
" not relax in her daily work of charity. Though weak and in her neglige, she insisted 
" on the mendicants being introduced in her room, that she might pay her respects to 
" them. The unfortunate lover was among the company. Her incomparable charms 
" were heightened by her plain dress and drooping attitude. The poor lover went back 
" with his brethren to the monastery. The arrow had penetrated to the core of the 
" heart. He refused to take any food, and during some days, completely estranged 
" himself from the society of his brethren. Whilst the intestine war raged in his bosom 
" Sirima died. Buddha, desirous to cure the moral distemper of the poor religious, 
" invited King Bimbasara to be present, when he would go with his disciples to see the 
" remains of Sirima. On the fourth day after Sirima's death he went to her house with 
" his disciples. There was laid before them her body, with a livid appearance, all 
*' swollen. Countless worms already issuing out through the apertures, rendered 
" lothsome its sight, whilst a horrible stench almost forbade a standing close to it. 
" Buddha coolly asked the King, "What is that object which is stretched before us? 
" Sirima's body, replied the King. When she was alive, retorted Buddha, people paid a 
" thousand pieces of silver to enjoy her for a day. Would any one take her now for half 
" that sum ? No, replied the King ; in all my kingdom there is not one man who would 
" oflFer the smallest sum to have her remains ; nay, nobody would be found who would be 
" willing to carry her to any distance, unless compelled to do so. Buddha, addressing 
" the assembly, said. Behold all that remains of Sirima, who was so famous for her 
" personal attractions. What has become of that form which deceived and enslaved so 
" many 1 All is subjected to mutability, there is nothing real in this world." 

3. NiGAS. 

In the history of Buddhism the Ndgas play even a more important part than the 
Yahshas. One of their chiefs named Virupaksha was the guardian of the Western quarter. 
Like the Yakshas the Nagas occupied a world of their own, called Ndgaloka, which was 
placed amidst the waters of this world, immediately beneath the three-peaked hill of 
Trikuta, which supported Mount Meru.^ The word Naga means either a " snake " or an 
" elephant," and is said to be derived from Naga, which means both a " mountain " and a 
" tree." In the Pur4nas the Kagas are made the offspring of Kasyapa by Kadru. In 
Manu and in the Mahabh^rata they form one of the creations of the seven great Eishis, 
who are the progenitors of all the semi-divine beings such as Yakshas, Bevas, Ndgas, and 
Apsarases, as well as of the human race. The capital of the Kagas, which was beneath 
the waters, was named Bhogcmati, or the " city of enjoyment." Water was the element of 
the N^gas, as Earth was that of the Yakshas ; and the lake-covered land of Kashmir was 
their especial province.^ Every spring, every pool, and every lake had its own N^ga, 
and even now nearly every spring or river source bears the name of some Naga, as Vir 
Nag, Anant Nag, &c., the word being used as equivalent to a " spring or fount of water." 

1 Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, pp. 11 and 44. 

* Raja Tarangini I., 30. Abul Fazl also notices that in 700 places there are carved figures of snakes, which 
" they worship." — Gladwin's Ain-i-Akbari — II., 126. 


Even a bath, was sufficient for a N&ga as we learn from the story of the birth of 
Durlabha the founder of the Karkotaka, or Naga dynasty of Kashmir Eajas in A.D. 625. 

In Buddhist history the Naga chiefs who are brought into frequent contact with 
Buddha himself, are generally connected with water. Thus Apaldla was the Naga of the 
lake at the source of the Subhavastu, and JEldpatra was the Naga of the well-known 
springs at the present Hasan AbdM, while Muchalmda was the Naga of a tank on the 
south side of the Bodhi tree at Uruvilwa, the present Bauddha Graya. At Ahichhatra 
also there was a Ndga Eaja who dwelt in a tank outside the town, which is still called 
AM-Sdgar or the " serpent's tank," as well as Adi-SS.gar, or " king Ad.i's tank." The 
connection of the Nagas with water is further shown by their supposed power of 
producing rain, which was possessed both by Elapatra and by the Naga of Sankisa,-^ and 
more especially by the great Niga Eaja of the Ocean, named Sagara, who had full power 
over the rains of heaven. In the Vedas also the foes of Indra, or watery clouds, which 
obscure the face of the sky, are named AM and Vritra, both of which names are also 
terms for a snake. The connection of the Nagas with water would therefore seem to be 
certain, whatever may be the origin of their name. 

In all the early Buddhist stories of the N^gas they are invariably represented either 
as worshippers of Buddha, or as hostile at first until gradually overcome by his teaching. 
Nowhere is there any trace that the N^gas were objects of worship to the Buddhists, 
although they were certainly held in respect by them for their supernatural powers. In 
later times their supposed power of being able to cause a fall of rain would seem to have 
led to a certain amount of reverence being shown to them, as in the case of the Naga of 
Sankisa, of which Fa Hian relates as follows : " It is he who causes fertilizing and 
" seasonable showers of rain to fall within their country, and preserves it from plagues 
" and calamities, and so causes the priesthood to dwell in security. The priests, in 
" gratitude for these f avows, have erected a dragon chapel, and within it placed a resting 
" place (seat) for his accommodation, and moreover they make special contributions in 
" the shape of religious offerings, to provide the dragon with food."^ The later pilgrim 
Hwen Thsang makes no mention of the Dragon Ohapel, although he notices the Naga 
himself as the sta/wnch gua/rdiam, of the Buddhist buildings.^ The Sankisa Niga was 
therefore looked upon by both pilgrims as the guardian of the sacred edifices, and as such 
he must have been considered a true worshipper of Buddha. 

The first N^ga whom Buddha encountered was the blind Muchilinda, who, during 
the seven days of Buddha's continued abstraction, coiled himself around the Sage's body, 
and formed a seven-hooded canopy over his head, which effectually screened him from 
the cold winds and rain, to which he had been exposed by the practices of his enemies,* 
The praises of Buddha were also sung by the great Naga Eaja Kalika with joined hands 
while the Nagnis offered flowers, incense, and perfumes.^ The powerful Apaldla also was 
subdued by the teaching of Buddha, and gave up his wicked practices against the people 
of the Subhavastu valley (Suwat).* 

1 See Julien's Hwen Thsang II., 152, for the former, and Beal's Fa Hian, p. 66, for the latter. 

2 Beal's Fa Hian, C. XVIL, p. 67. 

3 Julien's Hwen Thsang II., 241. II est le defenseur assidu des vestiges du Saint (Buddha). 

* Lalita Vistara, translated by M. Foucaux from the Tibetan, and Hardy's Manual of Buddhism p 182 
s Ibid, pp. 269-271. ' 

« Julien's Hwen Thsang 11,, 134. 

NiGAS. 25 

These Naga legends are all mucli the same, and invariably end in the submission and 
conversion of the serpent king. But there are some curious details in the account of the 
contest between the Niga King Nandopananda and Buddha's left-hand disciple, the great 
Mugalana, which are worth quoting as they throw some light not only on the relative 
position of the Nagaloka but also on the nature of the superhuman powers possessed by 
the Buddhist priests as well as by the Nagas.^ " At the time that Buddha visited the 
dewa-ldka Tawatinsa, the N4ga King Nandopananda said to his subjects : ' The sage 
' Gdtama Buddha has passed over the world on his way to Tawatinsa ; he will have to 
' return by the same way again, but I must try to prevent his journey.' For this 
purpose he took his station upon Maha Meru. "When one of the priests who 
accompanied Buddha, Rathapala, said that he had often passed in that direction before, 
and had always seen Maha Meru, but now it was invisible, Buddha informed him that 
it was the Naga Nandopananda who had concealed the mountain. Upon hearing this, 
Rathapala said that he would go and drive him away ; but the sage did not give him 
permission. Then Mugalana offered to go and subdue the Naga, and having obtained 
leave, he took the form of a snake, and approached Nandopananda. The Naga 
endeavoured to drive him to a distance by a poisonous blast, but Mugalana sent forth 
a counterblast ; and there was a battle of blasts, but that of the priest was more 
powerful than that of the Naga. Then the Naga sent forth a stream of fire, and 
Mugalana did the same, by which he greatly hurt the Naga, whilst the other stream 
did no injury whatever to himself. Nandopananda said in anger, ' Who art thou who 
' attackest me with a force sufficient to cleave Maha Meru ? ' And he answered, I am 
Mugal&na. After this he went in at one ear of the Naga and out of the other ; then in 
at one nostril, and out at the other ; he also entered his mouth, and walked up and 
down in his inside, from his head to his tail, and from his tail to his head. The Naga 
was still further enraged by this disturbance of his intestines, and resolved to squeeze 
him to death when he emerged from his mouth, but Mugalana escaped without his 
perceiving it. Another poisonous blast was sent forth, but it did not ruffle a single 
hair of the priest's body. After this Buddha imparted to Mugalana the power to 
overcome the Naga, and taking the form of a garunda (or eagle), he began to pursue 
him ; but Nandopananda offered him worship, and requested his protection." 

In the Bharhut sculptures there are several Naga subjects, all very curious and 
interesting, of which the principal are the Trikutaha GhaJcra, and the conversion of 
Uldpatra Ndga. The first of these I take to be a representation of the Nagaloka itself. It 
is carved on a circular boss on the inner face of one of the pillars of the S.W. quadrant.^ 
In the upper left quarter there is a highly ornamented triangular recess, in which is 
seated a three-headed serpent apparently on a lotus throne. In the lower left quarter 
there are two lions, and the whole of the right half is filled with elephants in various 
attitudes of eating and drinking, and throwing the trunk backwards over the head. As 
the word Ndga means an " elephant " as well as a " serpent," I take the sculpture to be a 
comprehensive view of the Ndgalolca. The presence of the two lions is puzzling ; but it 
seems quite impossible to doubt that the scene is intended to represent the Nagaloka as it 
is labelled on the upper rim of the circle with the words Tikotiho-chahamo, that is the 
Ghakra or division of the ancient Indian Universe called Trikutika. According to the 

1 Hardj's Manual of Buddhism, pp. 302 and 303. a See Plate XXVIII. fig. 1. 

H 25S. S 


Buddtist cosmogony, already quoted; the Mgaloka was situated under the Trihuta parvata 
or three-peaked mountain, which supports Mount Meru.^ Following the Vishnu Purana 
the Trikuta mountain was situated on the south side of Mount Meru, and accordingly I 
find the figure of Ghakavdko Ndga Baja placed as one of the guardians of the South Gate 
of the Bharhut Railing. But according to the Buddhist cosmogony it was the West 
quarter that was entrusted to the guardianship of Yirupaksha and the Nagas. The 
triangle seems to be rather an uncommon way of representing a three-peaked mountain, 
unless we consider that such a mountain would most probably have a triangular base, and 
as the serpents quarter was underneath Trikuta I take the triangle to represent the base, 
with the N4galoka exposed belo^f. 

The next subject is a figure of a Mga King 4| feet in height which occupies the inner 
face of the corner pillar of the South Gate.^ The figure difi'ers in no respect from that 
of one of the human kings, except that the head is canopied by a five-hooded snake. On 
the left side is the inscription Ghakavako Ndga Bdja, or " the Mga King Ohakmvdha." The 
figure is standing in an attitude of calm repose, with the hands crossed upon the breast. 
Its dress is in all respects similar to that of other kings in these sculptures. Strings of 
pearls and bands of embroidered cloth appear to be bound round the hair, and in the ears 
there are the same large earrings which are worn by all the royal personages. There 
are also necklaces, armlets, and bracelets. A light scarf is thrown over both shoulders — 
with the ends hanging down nearly to the knees. The upper part of the body appears 
to be naked ; but from the hips downwards the Mga Chief is clad in the Indian dhoti, the 
end of which reaches to the ground in a succession of very formal plaits. The attitude 
is easy, and the face has much better features than most of the other large figures. 

The third subject is another Mga Eaja attended by two Mgnis or females of the 
serpent race. This Eaja is also in human form, and is clad in the same human dress as 
the other, with the same light scarf over the shoulders, and with the same five-hooded 
snake canopy over his he^d. On each side he is attended by a Mgni, who is a woman 
only to the waist, or rather the loins, below which she ends in many a scaly fold of 
serpent tail. She is apparently quite naked, her only dress being the usual female 
ornaments of the time, namely huge earrings, necklaces, and a girdle of several strings. 
Her hand on the side towards the R4ja holds a chcmri, and the other rests on the upper 
serpent coil. 

It is very generally believed that when the Mgas appeared on earth among men 
they took the human form down to the waist only ; but in the Bharhut Sculptures the 
Naga Rajas are certainly represented in complete human forms, and are only distinguish- 
able from men by the canopy of snake-hoods over their heads. I observe, however, that 
the Mgnis are invariably represented as only half human, and that they are always 
naked. Sometimes the lower half of the figure is not represented at all, but is concealed 
behind an altar or platform, from which it seems to rise. This was a very common 
device with the Buddhist sculptors, which is particularly noticeable in the semi-Greek 
bas-reliefs from the Yusafzai district, as weU as in the Bharhut Sculptures. 

The next subject is of even greater importance than any of the preceding, as it 
represents a Mga Raja, attended by Mgas and Mgnis, paying his devotions before a 
Siris tree, or Acacia. The sculpture is a square panel on one of the comer pillars of 

1 Hardy's Manual of BuddhiBm, pp. 11 and 44, ^ gge Plate XV. fig. 3, 


the South Gate.^ On the left is the Siris tree rising from the midst of a square altar 
before -which is kneeling a 'Nkja, Raja in complete human form ; with a five-hooded 
snake canopy over his head. Behind the R^ja to the right are the half figures of a Naga 
and two Nagnis, also in human form, and with snake-hoods over their heads, but with 
their lower extremities concealed. In the midst of the piece is a five-hooded snake rising 
apparently from the ground, and above are two small trees, and two half -human N^gnis. 
The purpose of the sculpture is told in a short label which is inscribed immediately 
behind the principal figure : Empato Naga Edja Bhagavato vandate, that is " Erapdtra, the 
" Naja Raja, worships [the unseen figure of] Buddha." The great five-headed snake 
apparently rising from the ground I take to be the Naga Raja on his first appearance 
from below in his true snake form amongst the trees and rocks. In the time of Kasyapa 
Buddha Brapatra is said to have been condemned to lose the power of assuming his 
human form until the nest Buddha should appear in the world. Accordingly when he 
heard of S^kya Muni's attainment of Buddhahood he repaired at once to the new Buddha 
in his serpent form with five heads as shown in the sculpture, and on approaching the 
six Siris trees where Buddha was seated he instantly regained the power of appearing in 
human form. 

The last Naga sculpture in the Plate is taken from the coping of the Railing.^ It 
represents a five-headed snake with expanded hood resting on a wide ring of coils, before 
an ascetic seated in front of his hermitage. The ascetic has his right hand raised and 
appears to be addressing the Naga. In the absence of any inscription the precise 
identification of the scene is difl&cult ; but there can be little doubt that it represents 
either Buddha himself or one of his chief followers expounding the Buddhist religion to 
some Naga King. 

It is very much to be regretted that any of these curious and interesting scenes 
should have been lost. There is no doubt that there was at least one more Naga 
sculpture, as I found a fragment of a bas-relief belonging to a comer pOlar with the 
title of Naga Baja carved on one of the small pillars of a Buddhist railing. The name 
itself, which preceded the title, must have been a short one of not more than three 
letters, as it was inscribed on 'the same small pillar with the title which occupied rather 
more than one half of the space. 

4. — Apsabases. 

The Apsarases were divine nymphs who were said to have sprung from the churning 
of the Ocean. They were as famous for their skilful singing and dancing as for their 
beauty. The best and most detailed account of them is given by Groldstiicker,^ from 
which the following facts have been derived. " The Rig-Yeda mentions the Apsaras 
" Urvasi, and in the Anukramini of the Rig two Apsarases are named as the authoresses 
" of a hymn." In the Yajasaneyi Sanhita of the Yajur-Veda there occur five pairs of 
Apsarases, amongst whom there are the weU-known names of Menaka and Urvasi. 
" In the Adi-parvan of the Mahabharata, several of these divinities are enumerated under 
two heads." Amongst the first class I find the names MisraJcesi and AlamhusM, both of 
whom are portrayed in the Bharhut Sculptures ; to the second class belongs Urvasi. 

1 See Plate XIV., inner face of pillar, 2 geg piate XLII. fig. 1. 

3 Sanskrit Dictionary, pp. 222-223. 

E 2 


" As regards their origin," Goldstiicker continues, " the Eamiyana makes them arise 
" from the Ocean, when it was churned by the gods obtaining the Amrita. Manu 
" represents them as one of the creations of the seven Manus, themselves created by the 
" seven Prajapatis, Marichi, Atri, &c. In the latter Mythology they are the daughters 
" of Kasyapa by Muni." According to the Harivanasa they were the daughters of 
Kasyapa by Prddhi — and amongst their names I find Subhaga, Alambusha, and 

As to their creation, Goldstiicker thinks that, in the few hymns of the Rigveda in 
which mention is made of them, " these divinities seem to have been personifications 
" of the vapours which are attracted by the sun and form into mist or clouds." * * * 
" At the subsequent period, when the Grandharva of the Rig- Veda, who personifies these, 
" especially the Fire of the Sun, expanded into the Fire of lightning, the rays of the Moon 
" and other attributes of the elementary life of heaven, as well as into pious acts referring 
" to it, the Apsarases become divinities which represent phenomena, or objects both of 
" a physical and ethical kind, closely associated with that life. Thus in the Yajur-Veda, 
" Sunbeams are called the Apsarases associated with the Gandharva, who is the Svm, ; 
" Plants are termed the Apsarases associated with the Gandharva Fire ; constellations are 
" the Apsarases of the Gandharva Moon ; waters are the Apsarases of the Gandharvas 
" Wind," &c.^ " In the last Mythological epoch, when the Gandharvas have saved 
" from their elementary nature merely so much as to be the Musicians in the paradise of 
" Indra, the Apsarases appear, amongst other subordinate deities which share in the 
" merry life of Indra's heaven, as the wives of the Gandharvas, but more especially as 
" wives of a licentious sort ; and they are promised too as a reward to heroes fallen in 
" battle, when they are received into the paradise of Indra ; and while in the Rig- Veda, 
" they assist Soma to pour down his floods, they descend, in the epic literature, on earth 
" merely to shake the virtue of penitent sages, and to deprive them of the power they 
" would otherwise have acquired through unbroken austerities." 

It is in this last character as tempters of ascetic sages that they make their first 
appearance in Buddhist history. When S4kya Muni after six years asceticism was on the 
eve of obtaining Buddhahood, Papiydn despatched a troop of Apsarases to try their 
powers in disturbing the sage's meditations.^ They were of course unsuccessful, but the 
description of their various wiles shows that the Apsarases had already become the 
Huris of Indra's heaven. Some sang, some danced, and some extended their arms in 
various positions. Some smiled to show their teeth, while some laughed, and suddenly, 
as if ashamed, became grave ; some halE exposed their bosoms ; some displayed their 
figures through transparent garments ; whilst others dropped their clothes and exposed 
the belts of gold which girdled their loins. 

Much of this description can be realized in one of the most remarkable scenes of 
the Bharhut Sculptures.® The sculpture is broken towards the top, but fortunately very 
little has been lost, and all the inscriptions that remain are perfect. On the right are 
four female figures and a child dancing, all in different attitudes, and with their arms 

1 Sanskrit Dictionary, pp. 222-223. 

2 Lalita Vistara, translated by M. Foucaux from the Tibetan, p. 306. 

3 See Plate XV., outer face of pillar. The sculpture formed one of the panels of the corner pillar of the 
South Gate. 


extended in various positions. In the middle and to the left are eight other female 
figures, all seated, one handling a pair of cymbals, and four playing the seven-stringed 
harp, -while three more without instruments seem to be singing. In the left upper 
corner is a tree, but the greater part of it is missing, and any inscription which it may 
have borne is lost. Fortunately the labels attached to all the four dancing figures are 
still perfect, and from them we learn that the ladies are intended for Apsarases. The 
left upper figure is Suhhadd Achhard or " the Apsa/ras Subhadrd ;" that to the right is 
Sudascma Achhard or " the Apsa/ras Sudarsana ;" the right lower figure is Misakosi Aehhara 
or " the Apsaras Misralcesi ; " and that to the left is Alamiusd Achhard or "the Apsaras 
Alambushd." ^ The scene itself bears a label which is inscribed on two pillars of the 
Buddhist Railing beneath it. It appears to be Sddikasam madam tura/m devdnam, which 
I am unable to translate ; but it most probably refers to one of the common scenes 
enacted before the B&oas (devdnam) in Indra's heaven. But when I first saw this 
sculpture I had an impression that the tree in the left upper comer was the Bodhi tree, 
and that the scene represented the temptation of Sakya Muni by the Apsarases. 

In the Mahabharata Indra promises that heroes slain in battle will obtain Apsarases 
in the next world : — " Let no one ever lament a hero slain in battle. A hero slain is not 
" to be lamented, for he is exalted in heaven. * * Hear from me the worlds to which 
" he goes. Thousands of beautiful nymphs (Apsarases) run quickly up to the hero, who 
has been slain in combat, saying to him, Be my husband." ^ It is sufficiently clear 
from this quotation, as well as from the Bharhut Sculpture, that the Apsarases had quite 
lost every trace of their original conception as personified watery vapours or mists, or as 
sunbeams attendant on the Sun, and had been already degraded into the position of the 
courtezans of Indra's heaven, whose sole occupation was to sing and dance and minister 
to sensual enjoyment. This also was their condition at the time when the Ramayana 
was composed, as Rawana tells Rambha, that the Apsarases, of whom she was the most 
beautiful, were mere courtezans. ^ 

1. Royal Personages. 

The only representations of human beings on a large scale in the Bharhut Sculptures 
are the busts of some Kings and Queens on the rail bosses, a full length figure of a Soldier 
on one of the pillars, one royal relic-bearer on an elephant, and two standard bearers, 
male and female, on horseback. But as all the Yakshas and Yakshinis, the Devas and 
the Naga Rajas, are represented in human forms as well as in human costume, they may 
be taken as real representations of human beings. In the smaller sculptures the figures 
of men and women are of course numerous, and we have several representations of royal 
personages about whom there can be no doubt, as they are labelled with their names. 
Such are the figures of Rama, of Janaka Raja and Sivala Devi, of Magha Deva (Buddha 
in a former birth as a Raja), of the Rajas Prasenajita and Ajatasatru, and of the Royal 

1 See Plate LIV., Nos. 33, 34, 35, and 36, for these inscriptions, and Plate XV. fig. 1. The name of 
Misakosi is on the pillar to the right, that of Alambusha is just above the head of the child, and the other two 
names are at the top close beside the two figures. 

2 Muir's Sanskrit Texts, IV. 235, note 210, ^ Muir's Sanskrit Texts, IV. 394, 


Princess Maya Devi. But there are otiiers, wliicli though not inscribed, are almost 
equally certain from their dress, as well as from their seated positions amongst standing 
attendants. Such beyond all doubt is the figure seated on a throne with numerous 
attendants in the Nava MajhaJdya JdtaJca} There are also several representations of 
Ascetics, but they are all of small size, so that only a few of the details can be made out 
distinctly, although the general appearance is striking and consistent. 

2, Eeligious Persons. 

There are no priests with bare heads in these sculptures ; and the only figures which 
appear to me to be almost certainly priests are those which are represented in the 
different scenes of the corner pillar of the South Gate, as seated, all of whom have the 
right shoulder bare.^ But the whole of these figures have much the same tall and elabo- 
rate head-dresses as the kings and other laics, although I cannot trace any appearance of 
interwoven braids of hair. Supposing them to be priests, therefore, I infer that in the 
time of Asoka the priests shaved their heads, but kept them covered. They also wear 
the common dhoti. 

Some flying figures, which I thought at first might be Arhats, wear collars, and 
necklaces, and girdles, and may, therefore, be intended for Devas, or Grandharvas, or 
other superhuman beings. In a few instances of ascetics who wear beards and head- 
dresses somewhat in the shape of Parsi hats, I observe striped kilts, like the regular 
Buddhist SangMti, which was made of numerous strips of cloth sewn together.^ There 
would also appear to have been female ascetics who wore the same head-dresses as the 
men.* All these figures are probably intended for Brahmanical ascetics (ParivrdjiJcas) 
who are described by the Buddhists as letting their nails, hair, and beards grow, and 
wearing clothes of leaves and bark.^ They are generally accompanied by vessels of fire, 
which show that they were also fire-worshippers. 

According to all Buddhist tradition Sakya himself set the example of wearing 
short locks by cutting off his own hair with his sword on his assumption of an ascetic 
life. In imitation of their teacher every novice on taking the religious vows appeared 
before the elders with his hair and beard of only seven days growth.** 

I notice that the seated figm-es which have their right shoulders bare have the top 
knot or upper portion of the head-dress exactly over the top of the head. Now Prince 
Siddhartha before he became an ascetic is described as having his hair plaited and 
braided, and gathered into a knot on the right side. This peculiarity is seen in all the 
Sanchi sculptures in the head-dresses of the kings and great men ; and strange to say it 
is still preserved by the Buddhist laity in Burma. I infer, therefore, that the 'men who 
wear the top knot over the very top of the head may be priests and not laics. In the 
ladder scene of the same pillar there are also some standing figures which have the right 
shoulder bare ; but as they all wear necklaces, and have the top knot on the right side 

1 See Plate XXV. fig. 3. The figure, according to my identification of the story, is that of King Nanda. 

2 See Plate XV. in the right upper scene and the two middle scenes. 

3 See Plate XXV. fig. 6, and Plate XXVII. figs. 1 and 2. 
* See Plate XXIV. fig. 7. 

6 Foucaux's translation of the Lalita Vistara from Tibetan, p. 200. 
8 Bumouf, Introduction a I'Histoire du Buddhisme Indien, p. 179. 



they should be laymen. Perhaps they are lay brothers, or Bhddantas, who did not 
assume the priestly garb, but who might easily bare the right shoulder at religious 

3. EoTAii AND Lay Costume. 

Of the lay costume I can speak with more certainty, as there are several good 
examples of it, both male and female. The main portion of the male dress is the dhoti, or 
sheet passed round the waist and then gathered in front, and the gathers passed between 
the legs, and tucked in behind. This simple arrangement forms a very efficient pro- 
tection to the loins, and according to the breadth of the sheet it covers the mid thigh, or 
the knees, or reaches down to the ankles. In the Bharhut Sculptures the dhoti uniformly 
reaches below the knee, and sometimes down to the mid leg. As there is no appearance 
of any ornamentation, either of flowers or stripes, it is most probable that then, as now, 
the dhoti was a plain sheet of cotton cloth. That it was of cotton we learn from the 
classical writers who drew their information from the companions of Alexander, Thus 
Arrian says, " The Indians wear cotton garments, the substance whereof they are made 
" growing upon trees. . . . They wear shirts of the same, which reach down to the 
" middle of their legs, and veils which cover their head, and a great part of their 
" shoulders."^ Here the word rendered shirt by the translator is clearly intended for the 
well-known Indian dhoti, and the vdl must be the equally well-known Ghaddar, or sheet of 
cotton cloth, which the Hindus wrap round their bodies, and also round their heads when 
they have no separate head-dress. Similarly Q, Curtius states . that " the land is prolific 
of cotton, of which most of their garments are made," and he afterwards adds that " they 
clothe their bodies down to the feet in cotton cloth (ca/rbaso)."^ To these extracts I may 
add the testimony of Strabo, who states that " the Indians wear white garments, white 
linen, and muslin."* But though the cotton dress was white, it was not always plain, as 
Strabo mentions in another place that " they wear dresses worked with gold and precious 
stones, and flowered (or variegated) robes." These flowered robes must have been the 
figured muslins for which India has always been famous. 

Above the waist the body is usually represented as quite naked, excepting only a 
light scarf or sheet, which is generally thrown over the shoulders, with the ends hanging 
down outside the thighs. In some cases it appears to be passed round the body, and the 
end thrown over the left shoulder,'' 

The head-dress is by far the most remarkable part of the costume, as it is both lofty 
and richly ornamented. I have already quoted the description of Prince Siddhartha's 
hair as braided and plaited, and gathered into a knot on the right side of the head. This 
description seems to apply almost exactly to the head-dresses in the Bharhut sculptures. 
But judging from some difierences of detail in various parts, and remembering how the 
Burmese laymen still wear their hair interwoven with bands and roUs of muslin, I think 
that of the two terms braided and plaited, one must refer to the hair only, and the other 
to some bands of cloth intertwisted with the hair. The most complete specimen of the 
male head-dresses is that of the royal busts on two of the bosses of the rails.^ The head 

1 Indica, XVI, ; Eooke's translation. 

2 Tit. Alexand., VIII. 9. 

3 Geograph, XV, 1, 71. 

* See the statue of the Naga Raja in Plate XXI., 
right hand. 

6 See Plate XXIV. figs. 1 and 2, 


is about the size of life, and tlie details are all well preserved. In this sculpture, and in 
the companion medallion of a queen, I observe the bow of a diadem or ribbon, which I 
take to be a sure sign of royalty. A head-dress of a similar kind is worn by all the 
Naga Eajas,^ and in the case of the larger figure of the Naga king Chakavaka I think 
that I can distinguish the plaited hair from the bands of interwreathed cloth. The two 
bands which cross exactly above the middle of the forehead appear to be cloth, while all 
the rest is hair, excepting perhaps a portion of the great knot on the top. Similar cross 
bands or rolls of cloth may be seen in the head-dresses of the soldiers and standard 
bearer in Plate XXXII. figs 2, 3, 4, and 5. This interwreathing of muslin with the hair 
is also described by Q. Curtius, who says that " they wind rolls of muslin round their 
heads."^ The plaiting of hair, which I have described above from the Lalita Vistara, was 
likewise noticed by the Greeks, as Strabo records that " all of them plait their hair and 
bind it with a fillet."* These quotations seem to describe very accurately the peculiar 
style of head-dresses worn by all men of rank in the Bharhut Sculptures ; and as the 
chief classical authority for such details was Megasthenes, who resided for many years 
at Palibothra, their close agreement with the sculptured remains of the same age offers 
a strong testimony to his general veracity. The only exception that I have observed 
to the use of this rich head-dress is in that of Kujpiro TaJcho, or Kuvera the King of the 
Yakshas, who wears an embroidered scarf like that of the females as a head covering. 

The ornaments worn by the men will be described along with the female ornaments, 
as several of them are exactly the same. 

4. Military Costume. 

Amongst the Bharhut Sculptures there are no battle scenes or sieges as in the later 
sculptures of Sanchi. There is, however, a single figure of a soldier, nearly of life size, 
and in such fine preservation, that all the details of his costume can be distinguished with 
ease.* His head is bare, and the short curly hair is bound with a broad band or ribbon, 
which is fastened at the back of the head in a bow, with its long ends streaming in the 
wind. His dress consists of a tunic with long sleeves, and reaching nearly to the mid- 
thigh. It is tied in two places by cords ; at the throat by a cord with two tassels, and 
across the stomach by a double-looped bow. The loins and thighs are covered with a 
dhoti which reaches below the knees, with the ends hanging down to the ground in front 
in a series of extremely stiff and formal folds. On the feet are boots, which reach high 
up the legs, and are either fastened or finished by a cord with two tassels, like those on 
the neck of the tunic. In his left hand the ■ soldier carries a flower, and in his right a 
monstrously broad straight sword, sheathed in a scabbard, which is suspended from the 
left shoulder by a long flat belt. The extreme breadth of the sword may be judged by 
comparing it with the thickness of the man's arm, which it exceeds, while its length may 
be about 2^ feet, or perhaps somewhat more. The belt of the sword is straight, and 
without a guard. The face of the scabbard is ornamented with the favourite Buddhist 
Omega Symbol of Tri-ratna, or the triple gem. The sword belt, after being passed 
through a ring attached to the side of the scabbard, appears to be twice crossed over the 

1 See Plate XIV., inner face of pillar, and Plate XVIII,, upper bas-relief. 

2 Vit. Alexand., VIII. 9, " Capita linteis vinciunt." 3 Qeograph, XV. 1, 71 
* See Plate XXXII. fig. 1. 


scabbard downwards, and then fastened to a ring at the tip, below which the broad ends 
hang down like the ends of a scarf. 

In person the figure of the soldier is rather stouter and broader than a native of 
India, while a very thick neck, with flat features and short curly hair, seem to indicate 
a negro. But as the same flat features are found even amongst the female figures, I 
conclude that they have resulted chiefly from the sculptors' practice of carving down 
from a perfectly flat surface in a stone of adamantine hardness. 

The soldier's tunic, which I have just described, would appear from the account 
of Strabo to have been a regular kind of uniform furnished by the king. As Strabo's 
account is taken direct from Megasthenes, who actually resided at Pataliputra, the Court 
of Asoka's grandfather, the testimony is unimpeachable. According to him " the fifth 
" class consists of fighting men, who pass the time not employed in the field in idleness 
" and drinking, and are maintained at the charge of the king. They are ready whenever 
" they are wanted to march on an expedition, for they bring nothmg of thevr own with them 
" except their bodies."''- In another place he says "there is also a royal magazine of arms, 
" for the soldier returns Ms arms to the armoury."^ As to their arms we have the 
description of Arrian, which was taken either from Megasthenes or from Nearchus. 
" All wear swords of a vast breadth, though scarce exceeding three cubits in length. 
" Those, when they engage in close fight . . . they grasp with both their hands, 
" that their blow may be the stronger."* 

From these extracts we learn the curious fact that the Maurya kings maintained a 
fegular standing army, as they seem to have provided their soldiers with arms and 
uniform, as well as pay. 

5. Female Dress and Oenaments. 

The best specimens of the women's costume are exhibited in the life-size busts of 
two queens on the bosses of the rails, and in the nearly life-size figures of Yakshinis and 
Devatas on no less than seven of the pillars.* In six of these examples the upper part 
of the body appears' to be quite naked, but in the seventh, that of the Yakshini Ohanda, 
there are very perceptible marks of the folds or creases of a light muslin wrapper under 
the right breast. I think it probable, therefore, that an upper garment of a light 
material is intended to be shown by the sculptor, and that for the sake of displaying the 
different necklaces, and collars, and girdles, he has purposely omitted the folds and traces 
of the muslin wrapper. In the smaller figure of Maya Devi there is not the slightest 
trace of any upper garment ; but as she is sleeping amongst her women attendants, the 
Ghaddar may have been laid aside. It is quite certain, however, that the women did wear 
an upper wrapper, as some of the courtesan Apsarases, when they wished to tempt Sakya 
Sinha, are said to have half uncovered their bosoms, whilst others appeared naked in 
transparent garments.^ 

About the lower garment there can be no mistake, as every female, high and low, 
is represented as wearing a dhoti, exactly the same as that of the men. At the present 

1 Strabo. Geog., XV. 1, 47. ^ strabo. Geog., XV. 1, 52. 3 Arrian Indica, XVI. 

* See Plate XXIV. figs. 5 and 6, for the two Queens ; and Plates XXII. and XXIIL for the Yakshini 
Chanda, and the Devatas Chulakoka and Siriraa. 

6 Lalita Vistara, translated from the Tibetan by Foucaux, p. 307. 
H 255. p 


day the sheet of cloth, which forms the common Sa/ri of Hindu women, is simply an 
unsewn petticoat reaching from the waist to the ancles. In the Bharhut Sculptures it 
reaches very little below the knees, and the outer edge is gathered together in a con- 
tinuous succession of equal sized stiff and formal folds. In Central India, including 
Bharhut, as well as in the Maharatha country, the 8mi is stiU worn as a dhoti by most 
of the women, although the gathered ends are often let down, when the garment at once 
becomes the Hindu petticoat. 

The heads of the women are always covered by elaborately worked veils or Ghaddars, 
of which two very fine specimens are given in the two accompanying plates of the 
Yakshini Ghcmdd, and the Devata GlmlaTcoTm} In the latter example the covering seems 
to be a simple veil, which falls backwards over the shoulders down to the waist. But in 
the former the thin flowered cloth is passed tAvice over the head crosswise, and the 
parallel creases seen under the right breast are probably intended to show that the ehaddar 
was wrapped round the body. These veils appear to have been very richly and elabo- 
rately ornamented ; and judging from the pattern of the border of Chandas veil I believe 
the work is intended to represent gold embroidery. Strabo mentions " garments embroi- 
dered and interwoven with gold" as being carried in processions.^ These were 
probably intended for presents, just as brocades and shawls are now carried in separate 
trays at Darb&rs for the same purpose. 

The hair was parted in the middle, and always appears just under the front edge 
of the veil. In the bust of the Queen either the hair or the head-dress comes to a point 
at the top of the head. But in all the others the embroidered scarf takes the shape of 
the head, and the mass of the hair is gathered together at the back, and plaited into one 
or two long rolls which hang down as low as the waist, or twisted and tied into a large 
knot which half covers the back. The former arrangement is well shown in the figure 
of CJhand^ Yakshini and in the fine broken bust of another figure, the name of which 
is lost, and also in the attendants on M%a Devi.^ 


The richness and profusion of the ornaments worn by most of the figures in the 
Bharhut Sculptures, both male and female, are very remarkable. 

This taste of the ancient Indians was duly noticed by the Greeks, as Strabo remarks, 
" in contrast to their parsimony in other things, they mdndge in ornament." * The two 
sexes have in common earrings and necklaces, as well as armlets and bracelets, and 
embroidered belts. The women alone use forehead ornaments, long collars, garlands, 
zones or girdles, and anklets. There are no noserings ; and I may note here that I have 
not observed the use of this hideous disfigurement in any ancient sculptures. I will now 
describe each of these varieties of ornament in the order in which I have named them, 
taking due note of any special differences between the male and female specimens. 

Forehead Ornaments,— These appear to be worn by every female just below the 
parting of the hair on the top of the forehead. There are several varieties of them ; but 
the commonest form is that of a star, upwards of an inch in diameter. Eight different 

1 See Plates XXH. and XXIII. i 3 gee Plates XXIH., Ln., and XXVII. fig. 2. 

2 Geograph., XV. 1, 69. | 4 Geograph., XV. 1, 54. 


kinds are shown in the accompanying plate.^ Similar ornaments are worn at the present 
day. They are generally thin plates of gold or silver stamped into various patterns, 
amongst which the star shape is common, and the ornament is then called simply Sitd/ra, or 
the " star," but the common name is bena ; and when the pieces are very small they are 
called simply hwdi, or " spots," The old Sanskrit names are laldtiica, or " forehead piece," 
and patrpdsyd, or " the fastened leaf," the ornaments being sometimes formed of a piece 
of gold-leaf stuck on the forehead.^ I have not noticed any reference to these forehead 
ornaments in the Buddhist books. 

Earrings. — These ornaments would seem to have been almost universally worn, both 
by men and women. The only exception which I have noticed is that of the soldier, 
whose ears are not even bored. The general name for an earring is Ka/rnika, from Kama, 
an " ear," but the ornament takes almost as great a variety of names as it has shapes. 
If it is simply a ring or circle it is called Kimdal; if a circular plate fixed outside the 
lobe it is called dehri ; but if worked like a flower it becomes ha/rri-pJiul, or the " ear flower." 
The pendant attached to these has also different names according to its shape as Jhwrnlm, 
or the " bell pendant." In the accompanying Plate, fig. 12, is a dehri, and fig. 10 is a 
JJmmlca. In this case it is not only bell-shaped itself, but it has two rows of small 
bells attached below.^ Fig. 11 is a form peculiar to the Buddhists. It is the'symbol of 
the famous Tri-ratna, or " triple gem," of the Buddhist Triad, Buddha, Dharmma, and 
Sangha, and was therefore a very favourite ornament. In the Bharhut Sculptures it is of 
very frequent use either as an earring or part of a necklace. It is also placed on the 
soldiers' scabbard, and on the top of a standard, and I have found it amongst the small 
collection of Buddhist terra-cottas which I discovered at Kosambi. In these it forms the 
woman's earring, and the central ornament of a king's necklace. These terra-cottas seem 
to belong to the period of Indo Scythian rule in Upper India, about the beguming of the 
Christian era. 

But the most remarkable earrings are shown in figs. 13 and 14 of full size.* These 
are worn by males as well as females, and they are by far the most common kind of 
earrings. They are worn by the Yakshas and Yakshinis, by the Devatas, and by the 
N&,ga Rajas and Nagnis, as well as by most of the human figures. I examined all the 
large examples very closely, and I am satisfied that the middle portion was formed of a 
spiral tube, and that the whole ornament, though very large, was most probably not 
very heavy. The flanged end was always worn outwards, and the square flowered end 
inwards touching the cheek. They were no doubt placed in position by pushing outwards 
the flanged end through the long slit in the lobe of the ear, and then two complete turns 
of the spiral would place- the ornament in the position shown in figs. 13 and 14, with 
the square end touching the cheek. 

In all these representations I take the small circles and dots to represent precious 
stones, with which wealthy Indians have always been fond of enriching their golden 
ornaments, Strabo, indeed, says that their dresses were worked with gold and precious 

1 See Plate XLIX. flgs. 1 to 9. 

2 Colebrookes' Amara Kosha, in voce. 

3 See Plate XLIX. fig. 10. This curious form is found hanging from a tree in the representation of the 
KuKkura Jdtaka, or " Cock " birth. 

* See Plate XLIX. for all the difiPerent kinds of earrings. 

F 2 


stones, and tliat tteir vessels of gold, large basins and goblets, &C. were set with 
" emeralds, beryls, and Indian carbuncles."^ 

Necklaces are worn by all the figures, both male and female, who are represented in 
the Bharhut Sculptures, with the single exception of the soldier. They are of two kinds, 
short and long; which for the sake of distinction I will call necklaces and collars. The 
former were named EanthcuMsM, or " throat ornaments," or simply KmtU and Kantha, 
which names they still retain, although these are now confined to the short necklaces 
worn by men. The longer necklaces or collars were named Lcmhcmam or " long," and 
also lalcmtiJca or " dalKers," because they dallied between the breasts of the women. For 
the same reason they are also known as Mohawmdld, or the "bewitching garland;" but 
the common name for all these long collars is hd/r. In the Bharhut Sculptures nearly all 
the short necklaces which go round the throat are broad and flat, of the kind now called 
patiyd, or "broad." These are generally made of plain gold; but they may be also 
inlaid with precious stones. Other necklaces are named after the number of strings of 
which they are composed as pachlari, and satlari, or the " five-strings " and " seven- 
strings ;" and amongst the Bharhut Sculptures may be seen many examples of all kinds 
from three to seven strings. 

In the accompanying Plate of Necklaces,^ I have given examples of all the richer 
kinds taken either from the larger figures or from the separate representations of the 
ornaments themselves on the copings of the Railing. There is a broken statue of a 
female which offers specimens of both the long and the short necklaces.^ The short one 
is a chdu-lari, or " four-string " necklace, each string of which we may suppose to have 
been formed of pearls increasing in size towards the central gem, which was probably 
an emerald. A specimen of a three-string necklace, tilari, is given in fig. 1 of Plate L., 
in which the central stones are shown with several faces instead of being flat. Fig. 7 
is another specimen of the short necklace taken from the figure of Chanda Yakshini. 
This is a Sat-lari or " seven-string" necklace, with flat stones at various intervals, and 
some new devices in the upper row consisting of two leaves, two elephant-goads, and a 
symbol ; all of which would have been made of gold. Fig. 7 is also a short necklace, 
which would appear to be formed of a succession of semi-circular plates overlapping 
from the centre towards each end. It would have been made of gold alone, or with 
an inlaid flower of precious stones on each separate plate. 

The remaining specimens in the Plate, with one exception, are all long necklaces or 
lalcmtihas. Nos. 5 and 6 are taken from the separate representations of the copings. 
No. 8 is part of the long collar of a large female figure on a pillar at Batanmara, which 
was carried away from Bharhut.* Its chief ornament is the aniens, or elephant-goad. 
No. 3 is part of the long necklace of the statue of SirmA Devatd. The main feature in 
all these specimens of the long necklace is the very effective use of the favourite symbol 
of the Tri-raima, or " Triple Grem," of Buddha, Dharmma, and Sangha, as the principal 
ornament. In these collars the symbol is never used alone, but always in pairs. Mr. 
Beal calls this "the sacred symbol of the Mani, or 'three-fold gem,' indicating the all 
supreme Buddha." Its adoption as an ornament by the Buddhists is therefore quite 
analogous with the use of the cross as an ornament by Christians. 

1 Geograph., XV. 1-54, and 69. 
* See Plate L. 

3 See Plate LH. fig. 1. 

* See Plate XXL, middle figure. 


Armhts, or bracelets on the upper arm, are -worn by all, both males and females.' 
Figs. 15 and 16 are taken from the large statues of the two goddesses named GhulaJcoJca 
and Sirimd, and No. 18 from the large statues of the YahsJia Kupiro, the Ndga Baja 
Ghalcavdho and an unnamed figure. No. 27 belongs to another unnamed female figure 
All these specimens would appear to have been bands of gold set with precious stones. 
Armlets are now called haju, and are usually made of gold or silver beads. "When set 
with precious stones they are named navaratna, or the " nine gems," and when formed 
as a circle they are called cmcmta, or the " endless," i.e., the circular. 

Bracelets are worn by all the figures, both male and female, whether human, as King 
Magha Deva and his attendants and the Queen Maya Devi and her attendants, or semi- 
devine as the Yakshas, Devatas, N4gas, and Apsarases. The most common form appears 
to be a succession of strings and beads either square or round. Thus the Yaksha King 
Kupiro has six rings of square beads, and the Naga Raja Chakavako has five rings of the 
same. The goddess Ohulakoka has eight rings and Sirima Devata no less than 13, 
the former being apparently formed of round beads, while the latter looks like a spiral 
coil of 13 twists. But by far the most elaborate specimens are the bracelets of Chanda 
Yakshini, of which an enlarged sketch is given in the accompanying Plate.^ These 
undoubtedly consist of spirals of 10 coils each, with a jewelled plate on the outside of 
the wrist, and on the inside a curious arrangement of four perpendicular wires attached 
to a loop, apparently for the purpose of keeping the spiral closed. 

As well as I can judge from the sculptured representations, these bracelets would 
have been made of gold. AH bracelets are known by the general name of Kanglcan or 
Kangan ; but they have also received different names according to the different material 
of which they are made ; or if they form successive rings, according to the position 
which they hold on the wrist. 

Oi/rdles or Zones. — The most remarkable of all the ornaments of ancient India are 
the elaborate girdles or zones which were worn by the women. There is no female 
without a belt of several strings of beads, in addition to a broad embroidered belt, which 
is also worn by the men. This girdle is known by several names, and is frequently 
alluded to in the Buddhist writings. In the Amara Kosha these names are MeJchald, 
Kdnchi, SaptaM, Basand, and Sdrasand; on which Colebrooke remarks that though given 
as synonymous these terms " signify belts of various kinds, differing in the number of 
" rows or strings." Other names are SaTckari, Kakshd, Kati-Sutra, Katitra, &c. Of these 
names the most common is Mekhald, which not only includes a woman's girdle and a 
soldier's belt, but is also applied to the janeo, or sacrificial string, worn by these upper 
classes. Eati means the hips or loins, so Kati-Sutra means the " loin cords," or as we 
should say in English the waist-belt. 8aptald means a girdle of " seven strings." Of 
Basand and Sdrasana I do not know the meaning ; but Wilson says that the latter is the 
name of a woman's zone of 25 strings, as well as of a military belt. Basand is the term 
used by Kalidasa,^ for the tinkling girdle of the Vesyas or dancing girls. Colonel 
Ouvry translates the sloka very literally. " The Vesyas, whose girdles tinkle as they 
" dance, &c." 

1 See all the Plates of large figures, and Plate XLIX. figs. 15, 16, 17, and 18. 

2 See Plate LI. fig. 1. Other specimens of bracelets may be seen on the figures specified by name. 

3 Megha-duta, or " the Cloud Messenger," sloka 37. 


The other terms KdncM and Kalcshd, which mean respectively the plant and seed of 
the Abrus precatorius, or Gvmja, seem to me to point to a time when the girdle was made 
of strings of its brilliant red seed, KaksM, more generally known as rati or rahUlea, or 
the " red seed." In the course of time these would have been gradually superseded by 
gold and silver beads amongst the richer classes. These again would naturally have 
been expanded into larger beads of various shapes, square, round, or oval, according to the 
fancy of the wearer. After these would have followed chains of gold and silver, to 
which bells were added by the dancing girls. In this way I suppose that the Indian 
lady's girdle gradually assumed the elaborate and costly form of five, six, and seven 
strings of gold beads, such as we see worn by all the females in the Bharhut Sculptures. 

In the Lalita Vistara the Apsarases, who are described as having exhausted all 
their blandishments in their temptation of Sakya Sinha, are said to have displayed the 
" golden zones " which girded their figures, some by their transparent scarves, and others 
by suddenly dropping their garments.^ Others are said to have shaken iA^eir golden 
girdles, from which I have no doubt tiny bells were suspended. All these devices are 
practised by dancing girls of the present day, whose girdles, however, are generally 
limited to two or three silver chains. A brief description of a similar scene is given in 
the Pali Attahatha, or Commentaries on the Mahdwanso, where the most beautiful dancing 
girls display their charms with the intent of diverting Prince Siddhartha from becoming 
an ascetic.^ 

Of the female zone very fine specimens will be found in the accompanying plates 
on the figures of Chanda Yakshini and Chulakoka Devata.^ But the most elaborate 
specimen is that of the goddess Sirimd, of which I have given a sketch on a large scale 
for the clearer understanding of this costly ornament.* The broad flat belt, marked A, 
I take to be an embroidered girdle of cloth of gold, for the manufacture of which the 
Indians have always been conspicuous. The two small bead-girdles of two strings each, 
marked B and C, are what I take to be the early imitations of the strings of the red 
rati seeds in gold or hard stones, such as agate, jasper, camelian, lapis-lazuli, jade, and 
others. The remaining strings, which I have numbered consecutively, form a rich 
example of the SaptaU or Emchi of " seven strings." Of these the two outside strings 
consist of square beads, next which comes a string of round beads, and then another of 
square beads on each side, the middle line being either a chain or a string of oval 
beads. Many of the girdles were provided with small bunches of bells, which sounded 
as the wearer moved. A specimen of this musical ornament is given in Plate LI., fig. 3 
one haht of the original size. 

In the extracts which I have given from the Lalita yistara these girdles are spoken 
of simply as "golden zones," but in the Attahatha on the Mahdwamo the Mehhald is 
described as being "set with gems in newly burnished gold and silver."^ ^ It is most 
probable, therefore, that the flowers figured on the beads of Sirimd Devata's Mehhald 
are intended to represent inlaid stones. "With these specimens before us, we can more 
readily believe Strabo's account of the Indian indulgence in ornament.® 

1 Lalita Vistara, translated by M. Foucaux, from Tibetan, p. 307. 

2 Turnour, in Bengal Asiatic Society's Journal, VII. 806. 3 gge Plates XXII. and XXIII. 
* See Plate LI. fig. 2. s Turnour, in Bengal Asiatic Society's Journal, VIII. 806. 

6 Geograph., XV. 1, 54. 


The belt of the men, as represented on the figures of the Yaksha Kupiro and the 
'Nkga Eaja Chakav4ko, might perhaps be more appropriately called a sash, as after 
encircling the waist it is tied in a long bow just below the navel, with the two ends 
hanging down to the knees. I infer from the fact of tying, that the male belt must 
necessarily have been of cloth, although it was no doubt richly embroidered with gold. 

The soldier's sword-belt is quite plain, and was most probably made of leather. 

Anklets are worn by all the female figures, but there is not much variety in them. 
In the accompanying Plate, I have given three selected specimens from different figures.; 
All of them appear to be formed either of spiral coils or of consecutive circles of gold, 
piled one over the other, the upper and lower rings being more or less ornamented. 
Fig. 5 has apparently two rows of chains. Fig. 4 gives a specimen of a separate anklet, 
with a row of bells, such as was worn by Apsarases and dancing girls. In the temptation 
of Prince Siddhartha some of the Apsarases are said to have " tinkled the bells on their 
feet."** Similar anklets are worn by dancing girls even in the present day. The plain 
circular ring is now called Kwrd, the thick chain Samkla, and the ornamented circle with a 
row of small bells is named ghwmgru. 

Th/wmb-rmgs and Fmg&r-rmgs are also worn by all the women, but I have not noticed 
any particular forms. They are generally plain rings crowded together on the middle 
joints of the fingers. 

6. Tattooing. 

The practice of ornamenting the face and body with tattoo marks is common to all 
the aboriginal races of India. Amongst the Kols, the Saurs, the TJraons, and the Gronds, 
it is universal, no female being without some marks, while most of the women are rather 
profusely decorated. Now, it is a curious fact that not only are all the females in the 
Bharhut Sculptures more or less ornamented with tattoo marks, but they are all dressed 
in the same short dhoti-jpetticoat of the present inhabitants, which reaches down to the 
knees. I conclude, therefore, that as the mass of the modem population about Bharhut 
is of Kol descent, it is most probable that the great bulk of the people in this part of the 
country must have been Kols in the time of Asoka. 

The practice of tattooing is called godma, and the art is entirely confined to women, 
who make periodical visits to all the villages in their neighbourhood. From two of these 
women I obtained the modern tattoo marks given in Plate LII., with the name and price 
of each separate pattern. The smaller ones are confined to the fingers, cheeks, arms, and 
breasts. The larger ones are confined to the body and the thighs. I was disappointed 
at the small number of these modem marks which appear amongst the ancient sculptures. 
I had hoped to have found many of the old marks still surviving, but most of them would 
seem to have fallen into disuse. 

Amongst the ancient tattoo marks I notice the sun and moon on the cheek-bones of 
the Yakshini Ohanda, who has also several small flowers on her cheeks and chin. Two 
other statues, and one of the female busts, have their decorations limited to a single mark 
of the cmkus or elephant-goad on one of the cheeks. The statue of Sirima Devata also 
has only a single star or flower on her left cheek-bone. But others are much more 

1 See Plate LI. figs. 4, 5, and 6. 

2 Foucaux, Lalita Vistara, French translation from Tibetan, p. 307« 



profusely ornamented, as shown in the accompanying Plate.^ Here No. 1 figure will be 
seen to have a small bird or trisul above each breast, and another on the upper arm, also 
an aniens with two straight lines and a small flower on each cheek-bone, besides two 
elaborate cheek ornaments. A similar style is shown in No. 2, which is just one half of 
the original size. Here the cheek-bones are decorated with the sun and moon, while 
each cheek is literally covered with a dense mass of small ornaments which might be 
called a female cheek piece. Similar cheek ornaments may be observed in numberless 
examples, as for instance : 

The female standing beside Sakya Muni's Bodhi Tree - - XIII. 1. 

The female standing with bird in hand - - - - XIV. 2. 

The two Nagas before the sacred tree - - - - XIV. 3. 

The Apsarases dancing and playing _ _ _ - XV. I. 

The seated female holding a flower _ _ _ _ XV. 2. 

The female attendants of Ajatasatru _ _ _ - XVI. 3. 

In modern practice, which is most probably much the same as that of Asoka's days, 
the punctures are made with a needle, guarded by a coil of thread to within one-eighth 
of an inch of its point. Sometimes two needles are fastened together when parallel lines 
are required. The operation is always a painful one and brings on more or less fever, so 
that only a limited amount of tattooing can be performed at one time. The colouring 
matter is either lamp black or indigo. The following list gives the names of each of the 
modem figures with the part of the person on which it is usually punctured. The prices 
vary from one paisa to one anna each, or from about one farthing to three-haKpence : — 

No. 1. The Clove - 

„ 2. The Scorpion 

„ 3. The Sieve - 

„ 4. The Shell - 

„ 5. The Stool - 

„ 6. The Bird - 

„ 7. The Parrot - 

„ 8. The Duck - 

„ 9. Pair of Geese 

„ 10. Peacocks 

„ 11. Elephants 

„ 12. City of Jhansi 

„ 13. Ditto 

„ 14. CityofUrcha 

„ 15. Garden 

on the fingers, 


lower arm. 

upper arm. 
side of leg. 
upper arms, 
back of hand. 

upper arm or legs. 


upper arms. 

„ 16. Ditto - - _ - _ 

„ 17. Regiment (or Earn and Lakshman) - 

„ 18. Sita's Kitchen - _ _ _ 

There are of course many little varieties in the details of these rude figures, as may 
be seen in Nos. 1 and 2, Nos. 12 and 13, and Nos. 15 and 16, where I have given the 
variant examples of my two informants. My figures are about one half the size of the 
original sketches made for me by the two practitioners themselves. 

1 Plate LII. fig. 1. 



The animals represented in the Bharhut Sculptures are of two classes, the Natural 
and the Fabulous. The latter, however, are limited to three varieties, an Elephant with a 
fish-tail, a Crocodile with a fish-tail, and a winged Horse ; while the former comprises no 
less than 14 Quadrupeds, 6 Birds, 1 Snake, 1 Fish, 1 Insect, 1 Crocodile, 2 Tortoises, 
1 Lizard, and 1 Frog. The quadrupeds include the Lion, Elephant, Horse, Ehinoceros, 
' "Wild Boar, Bull, Deer, "Wolf, Monkey, Cat, Dog, Sheep, Hare, and Squirrel. The birds 
comprise the Cock, Parrot, Peacock, Groose, Wild Duck, and the Quail. The Snakes and 
Fishes appear to be of only one kind each ; and the solitary Insect is beyond all doubt a 

The Lion is represented in several of the small, scenes on the coping of the Bail, where 
he is at once distinguishable by his mane. A large figure of a Lion was placed as the 
first stone of the coping at each entrance facing the in-going visitor. Portions of three 
of these Lions have been found, but the head is unfortunately missing in two of the 
examples. The remains of these figures are shown in the accompanying Plate of Copings.-' 
The single head is boldly designed, but the mane is both stiff and formal. The mouth 
shows much spirit. The feet are perfect and correctly delineated. The general pose of 
the body shows considerable freedom of design as well as more truthfulness of execution 
than is generally found in Indian sculpture. The tail is rather too long and its tuft is 
very much exaggerated. 

The Sl&phant seems to have been a favourite subject with the ancient Indian artists, 
and in my judgment a very successful one. No doubt the small scale on which they are 
sculptured has helped to diminish any faults of execution ; but the outlines of the bulky 
figures are generally very correctly rendered, and the action in many cases is natural and 
spirited. The animal is represented in almost every possible position, as standing, 
walking, running, sitting down, eating, drinking, throwing water over his back, and, 
lastly, kneeling down in reverence before the holy Bodhi Tree. He is also represented in 
full front view, half front, and full side. 

The sitting Elephant is found on the beginning of all the copings with a figured 
housing (JhuT) on his back, and an undulating line issuing from his mouth, which encloses 
a separate scene within each of its progressive undulations.^ These figures are all 
executed with much spirit and considerable accuracy. Another sitting Elephant is shown 
in the well-known scene of Maya Devi's dream,** but the hindlegs of this figure are 
weakly drawn, and it is altogether inferior to most of the other elephants of these 

On the first pillar of the Eastern Grate there is a large Elephant full face who is 
carrying a royal rider in charge of a relic-casket.* The Elephant's head is encircled by 
a string of pearls with pendent symbols, and the rider carries the amicus, or elephant-goad, 
which he rests on the forehead of the animal Just as we see the Mahauts do at the present 

In the bas-relief of the Ndga loka one half of the medallion is occupied by six 
elephants in various postures. As Naga means an " Elephant " as well as a " Snake," I 

1 See Plate XXXIX. 

2 See Plates XL, XII., and XXXIX. 

H 255, 

3 See Plate XXVIII. fig. 2. 

1 See Plate XII., corner Pillar with Eelic bearer. 


infer that the artist intended by their insertion to represent their native land, as well as 
that of the Serpent.^ Of the six animals here sculptured the one at the bottom is shown 
in the act of plucking a sheaf of com ; the next above him is throwing his trunk back- 
wards over his head ; the third is filling his trunk with water from a stone bowl ; the 
fourth is pouring the water from his trunk down his throat ; the fifth has thrown his 
trunk back over his head like the second ; and the sixth, a large tusker, stands full to 
the front, his ears extended. The attitudes of some of these figures are well conceived 
and fairly executed, and altogether the scene is both natural and animated. 

The bas-relief of Bodhi-worship also presents the figures of six Elephants ; but there 
the attitudes are limited to the two reverential acts of presenting garlands and bowing 
before the Tree.^ The figure of the larger Elephant in the act of bowing, with his hogged 
back, and his forelegs bent backwards beneath his body, is sketched with equal spirit and 

In the Lainma Jdtaha, or " Birth as a Latuwa— bird," the Elephant is represented 
under three different aspects :^ first, as being attacked by a bird and an insect ; second, as 
running away ; and third, as plunging down a precipice. In the second figure, where the 
passion represented is fear, I notice that the animal's tail is placed between his legs ; and 
in the third, where madness is intended to be shown, the tail is swung violently back- 
wards ; while in the first scene, before he is roused to passion, his tail hangs down 
unmoved.* These differences show that the artist was not unobservant of the character 
of the animal, although the drawing and execution of the figures are inferior to those of 
the sitting Elephants on the coping. 

The Horse is more rarely represented in the Bharhut Sculptures than would have 
been expected. The principal examples are the two chargers of the male and female 
standard bearers at the East and South Grates ; a caparisoned Horse on one of the pUlars 
of the South-west Quadrant, and the Chariot Horses of Eaja Prasenajita and of the 
Mugapakka Jataka.^ 

Arrian relates, apparently on the authority of Nearchus, that the Indians " have 
" neither saddles nor bridles for their horses, like those the Grrecians or Keltoe make use 
" of, but instead of bridles they bind a piece of raw bullock's hide round the lower part 
" of their horse's jaws, to the inner part of which the meaner sort fix spikes of brass or 
" iron, not very sharp, but richer ones have theirs of ivory. Within the horse's mouth 
" is a piece of iron like a dart, to which the reins are fastened. When, therefore, they 
" draw the reins, the bit stops the horse, and the short spikes thereto fixed make him 
" subservient to the rider's will."* 

An examination of the Bharhut Sculptures shows distinctly that the Indians had no 
saddle, while they certainly used a bridle. Of course it is quite possible that the bridle 
may have been introduced between the time of Alexander and that of Asoka. Instead 
of a saddle there is a thickly-wadded pad, with ornaments at the four comers. The 

1 See Plate XXVIII. fig. 1. ^ See Plate XXX. fig. 2. ^ See Plate XXVI. fig. 1. 

* In Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 178, a frightened elephant is thus described : The " Elephant 
Girimekhalo, fell upon his knees, trembled with fear, . . . curled up his trunk, and thrust the end into his 
mouth, put his tail between his legs, growled fiercely, &c., and fled away." 

6 See Plate XXXII. for the standard bearers, and Plates XIII. and XXV. for the four-horse chariots. 

^ See Arrian Indica, XVI. 


bridle, -wMch is made of a twisted cord, is fastened to the head-gear over each side of the 
horse's mouth. The head-stall itself has the usual band passing over the top of the head 
behind the ears, and a second band down the face. These are connected by three 
horizontal bands, the lowest being level with the mouth, the middle one passing under 
the cheek, and the upper one above the cheek. A broad horizontal band, ornamented 
with flowers or rosettes at regular distances, passes right round the horse from chest to 
tail. As to the horses themselves they are all round-barrelled animals with short thick 
necks and thick legs. 

The Chariot Horses of ES,ja Prasenajita have plaited manes, and plumes on their 
heads. The crossbar of the chariot pole rests on the necks of the two middle horses. 
The Eaja is driven by a charioteer. 

The Ass is perhaps represented in one of the half -medallions, as the tail is much too 
long for any animal of the Deer kind, but the beast has long ears and a hairless tail.^ 

The Bull is represented only on a small scale in the bas-reliefs of the coping. The 
chief scene is that of the Sujdta Mtaica, where according to the legend the animal should 
be represented as dead. But the design in the bas-relief is not happily rendered, as the 
bull appears to be sitting up. On the Pillars and Rail-bars there are larger figures, but 
they are rather clumsily drawn. All of them have humps.^ 

The Bhmoceros (or an animal very like one) is represented only once in the half- 
medallion at the top of one of the North-east Pillars.^ The long snout approaches that 
of the Tapir, but from the appearance of a horn on the top of the head I am inclined to 
believe that the artist really intended to represent a Rhinoceros. The bulky legs are in 
favour of this identification. The sculptor's sketch must certainly have been made from 
memory, as the tail is quite a fancy one of the most preposterous length. 

The Deer is frequently represented. No less than six specimens, both male and 
female, appear in the Miga Jataha, or " Deer birth," and a single buck is shown in the 
Isi-Miga Jdtaka.* But the largest and best figures of the Deer are in the half -medallion 
at the top of one of the South-east Pillars.^ They are true Deer with Antlers, and not 
Antelopes. The Antelope is also represented as well as the spotted Deer or Para,^ and 
the bas-reliefs show that the artist was quite familiar with the forms of these animals. 

The Monkey was evidently a favourite subject with the Buddhist Sculptors, as he is 
represented in several scenes and in various aspects, both serious and humorous. He 
appears in the Bhisa-harcmin/a Jdtaka as an important personage, seated on the ground 
and energetically addressing the chief person in the scene.' A second scene seems to 
be intended for a fight between men and monkeys. About one half of it is lost, but 
there is so much life and variety in the figures which remain that the loss of the rest is 
very much to be regretted.^ As the whole of the monkey scenes will be separately 
described in another place, I will only refer here to the spirit and freedom of the drawing 
which most of these bas-reliefs display, and to the real humour shown in the two scenes 
exhibiting an Elephant taken captive by Monkeys. 

1 See Plate XXXV. fig. 4. 

2 See Plate XXXIV. fig. 1, Plate XVII. fig. 10, 
and Plate LVH. 

3 See Plate XXXVI. fig. 4. 

* See Plate XXV. fig. 1, and Plate XLUI. fig. 2. 

6 See Plate XXXVI. fig. 3. 

« See Plate XLIV. fig. 8, for the spotted Deer. 

» See Plate XLVffl. fig. 7. 

8 See Plate XXXIII. fig. 5. 

a 2 


The Gat is represented only thrice, and each time of so small a size that the execution 
offers no point for remark. In the Bvrdla Jdtaha, or " Cat birth," the Cat appears 
■watching a Cock seated in a tree.^ In the Uda JdtaTca two Cats appear to be quarrelling 
over some Fish,^ 

The Bog is represented five times ; but thrice under the same disadvantageous con- 
dition of a small scale. Two Dogs appear in the TIda Jdtaha along with the Cats. One is 
apparently walking off with a bone, while the other is taking his disappointment quietly in 
a sitting posture.^ In the third representation the Dog is also sitting, with his mouth 
open and showing his teeth, as if snarling. The legs are gone.* The other specimens 
are luckily on a larger scale, where two Dogs are represented attacking a Boar. They 
are like the present hill dogs, with straight ears and bushy tails that curl over on to their 

The Sheep is only once represented, as a Ram butting at the upraised knee of a man 
who is lying on the ground. The Kare is twice represented in the border above the 
Rhinoceros. There is no possibility of mistaking the animal, although his forelegs are 
made longer than his hind legs.® The Squirrel is also represented twice on the sides of a 
Pillar below the centre medallion. The animal is the common striped Squirrel called 
gakri, which is so well known. It is appropriately represented eating fruit while holding 
on to the small branch of a tree. 

The Goch is only once represented in the Kuhhuta Jdtaha, or " Cock birth." The 
Parrot is several times given on the sides of the Pillars just below the medallions. He is 
always shown hanging from a spray and pecking at the fruit. He is distinguished by 
his hooked bill and long tail. The Peacoch is known by his expanded tail. He is thus 
represented on the sides of the Pillars on a small scale, and he forms the sole figure of 
one of the medallions on a large scale. He is also seen in the Hansa Jdtaha, or " Groose- 
birth," as the suitor for the Goose's daughter — but this bas-relief is unfortunately 
broken.' The Peacock is an easy subject for a sketch, as his expanded tail with its 
large round spots cannot be mistaken. 

The Goose occurs only in the Hansa Jdtaha. The legs and hinder part of the body 
are gone, but the head and fore part remain, which are readily recognizable as belonging 
to a Groose, without the aid of the accompanying label. The "Wild Duck, or some other 
fishing bird like it, is represented in the Ndga Jdtaha in the act of swallowing a Fish.^ 
The Latuwd, or Quail, is found only in the Latuwa Jataka. It is represented with a long 
tail and a sharp bill.^ 

All the representations of Snalces belong to the superhuman Nagas, whose heads are 
always of the Cobra species. 

The single specimen of an Insect in the Bharhut Sculptures is that of a Flesh-fly in the 
Latuwa Jataka. The Insect is of the size of life, and on the wing, attacking an Elephant 
in the eye. In the same scene there is a Frog sitting on a rock above, who by his 
wide open mouth seems to be croaking his loudest to assist in distracting the Elephant. 

1 See Plate XLVII. fig. 5. 

2 See Plate XLVI. fig. 2. 

3 See Plate XLVI. fig. 2. 

4 See Plate XXVII. fig. 14. 
6 See Plate XXXIV. fig. 1. 

« See Plate XXXVI. fig. 4. 

7 See the Hansa Jitaka in Plate XXVII, 
fig. 11. 

8 See Plate XXV. fig. 2. 

9 See Plate XXVI. fig. 1. 


Tlie representations of all these animals, with the single exception of that of the 
Rhinoceros, are generally correct and spirited, although the legs of the Deer and Horses 
are often clumsy and much too thick for beauty. To my eye the Elephants are the most 
successfully treated, which is perhaps due to their bulky bodies and massive legs, in 
which a slight departure from nature would not be so perceptible as in the more slender 
limbs of the Horse and Deer. There is considerable truth also in the heads of the 
Crocodiles on the ends of the Toran beams. But the most spirited of all the animals 
are the Monkeys, with whose attitudes and figures the artists have been generally very 


The Trees represented in the Bharhut Sculptures are as numerous and varied as the 
Animals, but partly as I believe from want of skill in the sculpture, and partly I fear 
from my own ignorance, there are a considerable number of them that still remain 
unidentified. Some of the trees can be recognized at a glance, such as the Banian 
Tree with its pendent roots, the Mango Tree with its peculiarly shaped fruit, the Bambu 
with its joints, and the Tar Tree with its fan-like leaves. Others, again, have been luckily 
labelled by the sculptors as the Bodhi Trees of particular Buddhas, as the " Bodhi of 
" Vipaswi," which was the Patali or Trumpet Flower-tree, the " Bodhi of Viswabhu," 
which was the Sal Tree, or Shorea Robusta, &c., &c. In a few instances the fruits only 
have been sculptured ; such as the Mango, the Jack Fruit, and the Custard Apple. 

The following brief notice of the principal Trees and Fruits will be sufficient to direct 
the attention of botanists to the sculptures in which they are represented : — 

1. The Banian Tree, or Ficus Indiea. — One of the best specimens of this Tree is in 
the scene of the Chhadantiya Jatak'a,^ where the Tree can be recognized by its pendent 
roots. But as we learn also from the legend that the famous Chhadantiya Elephant was 
accustomed to stand under a great Banian Tree, we have a direct proof that the Tree must 
be intended for a Banian. Another excellent representation of this Tree will be found 
on Prasenajita's Pillar, in the scene where a number of Elephants are placing garlands at 
the foot of a Tree.^ Here, again, the Tree is known by its pendent roots ; but the iden- 
tification is placed beyond all doubt by the accompanying label, which reads bahu hathiho 
nigodhe, where hahu hathiko alludes to the herd of Elephants, and Nigodhe to the Nyagrodha, 
or Banian Tree. In a third representation of the Bodhi Tree of Kasyapa Buddha, we 
are equally certain of the identification, as the Banian Tree was his Bodhi.* In this 
the pendent roots have been omitted — to make room, as I suppose, for a number of 
garlands — ^but the leaves and berries are a sufficient proof that the Tree is a Fig Tree. 

2. The Pvppal, or Ficus Beligiosa. — The identification of this Tree is certain, as it was 
the Bodhi Tree of Sakya Muni.* It is correctly represented with long pointed single 
leaves, but the inscription of 

Bhagavato Salca Munino Bodhi — 
leaves no doubt whatever that the Tree is intended for the Holy Pippal of the Buddha 
Sakya Muni. 

3. The JJdwmhara, or Ficus Glomerata, is recognized by the label giving the name of 

1 See Plate XXVI. fig. 2. I ^ gge Plate XXX. fig. I. 

a See Plate XV. fig. 3. | * See Plate XIII. fig. 1, and Plate XXX. fig. 3, 



the Buddha Kanaka Muni whose Bodhi Tree it was.^ The peculiar Mg-tree leaf is well 
marked, but I see no other peculiar point that would lead to its identification. 

4. The Pdtali, or Bignonia Suwoeohns. — This was the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha 
Vipaswi, whose name is inscribed above the medallion — 

Bhagavato Vipasimo Bodhi — 
The Tree is in flower, but as the flower is represented in full front view, the peculiar 
shape which gave it the name of Pdtali, or the " Trumpet-flower," is not seen.^ 

5. The Sal Tree, or Shorea Bohusta, is frequently represented in Buddhist Sculptures, 
as Maya Devi gave birth to the infant Sakya Muni when standing under a Sdla. It was 
also the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Viswabhu, and his name is inscribed below the 
representation of his Tree,^ Unfortunately this bas-relief has been much injured ; but in 
the same Plate I have given a fragment of one of the broken statues, in which the hand 
of a female is grasping the flower and leaf of a Sal Tree. In the upper part of the same 
a portion of the fruit is also visible. The representation of the flower is somewhat 
conventional, but it is sufl&ciently true to the general form and appearance to have been 
recognized by several of my native followers. 

6. The Sirisa, or Acacia Svrisa. — This was the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Krakuchanda, 
and his name forms part of the label inscribed above his Tree* — 

Bhagavato Kahusadhasa Bodhi — 
The lower part of the sculpture has been lost, but the whole of the Tree is in good 
preservation. Its small leaves and large bunches of flowers are characteristic of the 
Acacia Sirisa. 

7. The Mango, or Mamgifera Indica — This well-known Tree occurs frequently amongst 
the sculptures, and is easily recognizable by its peculiarly shaped fruit. In the bas-relief 
of the Jetavana Monastery there is a holy Mango Tree surrounded by a Bailing, the story 
of which I have already given.^ There is another specimen in the^. scene representing the 
visit of Raja Ajatasatru to Buddha, which took place in the Mango garden of Jivaka at 
Rajagriha.® A third specimen occurs in the Sankisa Ladder scene ; and a fourth in the 
bas-relief of the Asadrisa J&taka.'^ In aU these examples the Tree is small, and the fruit 
is very minute, but throughout the bas-reliefs of the coping large bunches of the Mango 
fruit form a common ornament.^ 

8. The Jambu, or Eugmia Jamihu. — The Tree here identified was recognized by my 
native followers. It is apparently a holy Tree, as it has a throne beneath it surrounded 
by a number of spotted deer.® 

9. The Kachmdr, or Bauhinia variegata. — This Tree also was recognized by my native 
followers, but I am not satisfied as to the accuracy of their identification. 

10. The Bamhu, or Bambusa. — The Bambu, being a favourite food of the Elephant, is 
appropriately added to several scenes in which he appears. One of the best specimens of 
Bambu occurs on the middle beam of the Bast Gateway. A second specimen with 

1 See Plate XXIX. fig. 4. 

2 See Plate XXIX. fig. 1. 

3 See Plate XXIX. fig. 2. 
* See Plate XXIX. fig. 3. 

6 See Plate XXVIII. fig. 3. 
« See Plate XVL fig. 3, Le Lotus de la Bonne 
Loi, p. 451. 

»■ See Plate XVU. fig. 2, and Plate XXVIL 
fig. 13. 

8 See Plate XLIH. 6 ; Plate XLVI. 1 ; and 
Plate XLVIL 9. 

9 See Plate XLIV. fig. 8. 



Elephants browsing, and a third amongst rocks will be found amongst the bas-reliefs of 
the copings.^ In all of these the knotty joints and the long plumy branches of the 
Bambu with their numerous leaves are characteristically rendered. 

11. The TAr Tree, or Borassus flabelliformis. — This is the well-known Fan-palm, whose 
spreading pointed leaves are successfully represented in one of the broken medallions. 
The peculiar appearance of the trunk of the Tree is also happily hit off.^ 

12. The Khajur, or Phoemx sihestris. — -This is the wild date tree of India. Its 
identification is perhaps doubtful ; but I cannot recall any tree which would agree half so 
well as the Khajur with the Sculpture.^ The Khajur is also represented on a large scale 
on the Prasenajit Pillar where the trunks are placed at the angles of the Pillar so as to 
form frames for the bas-reliefs. Both leaves and fruit are shown in these specimens. 

13. The Khatahal, or Artocarpus integri folia. — The Jack Tree with its huge fruit is 
too well known to need description. In some of the scenes I think that I can distinguish 
the Jack Tree with its fruit, but there is no doubt about the identification of the fruit 
itself in many of the bas-reliefs of the coping.* 

14. The Sitd-phal, or Annona Squamosa — the Custard Apple. — My identification of 
this fruit amongst the Mathura Sculptures has been contested on the ground that the tree 
was first introduced into India by the Portuguese. I do not dispute the fact that the 
Portuguese brought the Custard Apple to India, as I am aware that the Bast India 
Company imported hundreds of grindstones into the sandstone fort of Chunar, as if for 
the purpose of illustrating the proverb about carrying coals to Newcastle. I have now 
travelled over a great part of India, and I have found such extensive and such widely 
distant tracts covered with the wild Custard Apple that I cannot help suspecting the tree 
to be indigenous. I can now appeal to one of the Bharhut Sculptures for a very exact 
representation of the fruit and leaves of the Custard Apple.^ In a second sculpture a 
Monkey is represented on a branch of a Custard Apple Tree eating one of the fruits." 
On a third a striped Squirrel is so represented. The common Hindi name is Ata, or 
simply at, from the Sanskrit dtripya. 

15. The Plantain Tree with its broad [straight leaves appears to be represented in 
Plate XLIV. fig. 6. 

16. The Lotus flower is extensively used : in the ornamentation of the basses of 
medallions of 'the Pillars and Rails. It forms also the sole decoration of the outside of 
the coping, where the long continuous row of large many -leaved flowers with a few buds 
and stalks striking and rich line of ornament. The Plant itself with its buds and 
blossoms is found on a^ large scale in one of the Jataka medallions.^ 

17. The Wheat is represented standing in one of the bas-reliefs of the coping, where 
it is being cut by a female.® 

18. The Si/ris Tree, or Acacia Sirisa, is represented in the scene of " Blapatra Naga 
worshipping Buddha " whose throne is placed under one of a group of six 8iris Trees. 

1 See Plate VIII., Plate XL VI. 6, and Plate 

2 See Plate XXX. fig. 4. 

3 See Plate XV. fig. 3, and Plate XIII. 1, 2, 3. 
* See Plate XIV. 1, XLI. 4, XLII. 8, XLIII. 1. 

B See Plate XLVH. fig. 2. 
» See Plate XXXIH. fig. 6. 
^ See Plate XL. fig. 1, for the coping flower, and 
Plate XXVIL fig. 10, tor the plant. 
3 See Plate XL. fig. L 



1. Jatakas, oe previous Bieths of Buddha. 

The Jdtahas, or " Births," are legends of Buddha's previous existences, which he 
related at various times to his hearers, in illustration of his doctrine that good actions 
secure a higher and better position in the next birth, while bad actions entail a lower 
position, in consequence of which the attainment of Nirvana is still longer deferred. 
These legends would appear to have been very popular everywhere, as they form many 
of the most conspicuous subjects of the Buddhist Sculptures of Bharkit, Sanchi, Mathura, 
and Gandhara. They are still very popular both in Ceylon and in Burma, where they 
are best known in a work called Pansiya-panas Jdtalca pota, or " Book of the five hundred 
and fifty births." ..." The Singhalesae," adds Spence Hardy, " will listen the 
" night through to recitations from this work without any apparent weariness, and a 
" great number of the Jatakas are familiar even to the women."^ 

In India proper amongst the Nepalese collection formed by Hodgson only one work 
has been found which contains a collection of Jatakas. This is appropriately named 
Jdtalca mala, or the " Grarland of Births." ^ According to Burnouf, who examined the 
Nepalese collection, the work contains an account of the various meritorious acts of 
Sakya prior to the time when he became a Buddha. 

The following is Spence Hardy's account of the Ceylonese collection of the 550 
Jatakas : — '^ 

" It is named Jdtalca Odtha, or ' Birth Stanzas,' although a large proportion of them 
" has no reference (independent of the comment) to any birth, being general maxims 
" or miscellaneous observations- Each of the first one hundred Jatakas consists of a 
" single verse of four lines ; but some of the remainder, being histories, are much longer, 
" the last one, or history of King "Wessantara, occupying 40 pages. The comment 
" comprises : — 1. The occasion upon which the verse was spoken. 2. A story illustrating 
" it, affirmed to have been related at the time by Buddha, detailing circumstances which 
" occurred to him and .the parties respecting whom the verse was spoken, in a previous 
" birth. 3. A philological explanation of the words and sense of the stanza, the verses 
" being mostly inserted at length." 

Spence Hardy gives a list of the number of times in which Buddha appeared in 
particular states of existence as recorded in the Jatakas ; but the list as he himself 
observes is imperfect, as the details amount to only 506 different births out of the 550.* 
Upham professes to give the complete list ; but many of his names are given more than 
once. His spelling of the names too is so corrupt, as to make their identification 
generally difficult, and in some cases perhaps impossible.® But in addition to this he 
has given the story of the Hansa Jataka under the wrong title of Nada Jataka. The 
Buddhist Jatakas are acknowledged to be the originals from which many of the tales 
of the Buddhist Panchatantra and of the Brahmanical Hitopadesa have been derived. 
It is true that great differences exist in the details of these stories, but M. PausboU is of 

^ Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 99. 

2 Introduction a THistoire du Buddhisme Indien, p. 61. 

3 Manual of Buddhism, p. 99. * Ibid, p. 100. 
s Sacred and Historical Books of Ceylon, III. 269. 


opinion tliat if an old manuscript of the Panchatantra could be found, " the similarity 
" between the Singhalese (Pali) and the continental (Sanskrit) fables would appear greater, 
" the Panchatantra being originally, as Professor Benfey has clearly shown, a Buddhistic 
" work."^ Now in the Bharhut Sculptures we have a " continental " edition of about a 
score of the Jatakas, which is not only several centuries older than the Panchatantra, but 
is also much more ancient than the Pali version of Ceylon. And herein lies the great 
value of the Bharhut bas-reliefs, that they form by far the oldest collection of the 
Buddhist J4takas that has yet been brought to light. A comparison between them and 
the Singhalese and Panchatantra versions will prove which of the two, the Singhalese or 
the continental Sanskrit, has departed farthest from the original. 

The following extract will show very clearly to what extent the fables of the 
Hitopadesa are indebted to the old Buddhist Jatakas : — 

" Baka Jdtalca} 

" An artful Cormorant (Crane) addressing himself to some Fish who were living in a 
" very shallow tank, offered his services to convey them to another, in which he assured 
" them there was abundance of water. The simple Pish, seduced by this tempting offer, 
" permitted the Cormorant (Crane) to take them out in succession — but instead of conveying 
" them to the promised tank he had no sooner got them out of the sight of their com- 
" panions then he fell to and devoured them. One day he happened to address himself 
" to a Crab, who resided in the same tank, and who readily accepted the offer, but proposed 
" as the most convenient mode of transporting him, that he should cling about the 
" Cormorant's neck. The Cormorant consenting to this arrangement, they proceeded on 
" their journey. After having gone some distance the Crab, looking round and discovering 
" no appearance of a tank, suspected the intention of the cormorant, and seizing him fast 
" by the neck, threatened him with instant death, unless he went back immediately to the 
" tank they had quitted. The Cormorant, not daring to refuse, returned accordingly with 
" the Crab, who just as he was entering into the water, with his piercing claws nipped off 
" the cormorant's neck, in the same manner as the stem of a I6tus is cut in two by a pair 
" of sharp scissors. Bodhisat, then a Tree-god, observing what had passed proclaimed 
" aloud the mischief of deceit, and the just punishment by which in this case it was 
" followed."^ 

This simple tale, which reads very much like one of ^sop's fables, has not been 
improved by the Brahmanical Author of the Hitopadesa, but the alterations are very 
slight. As his version is fortunately very short I give it here in full ; — * 

" The Crane and the Grab. 
" A silly crane after devouring many fine inferior and middle-sized fishes, perished 
" under the gripe of a crab, for his excessive gluttony. 

" How, asked Chitravana, was that ? 
" The Minister related. 
" In the county of Malwa is a pool called Padma-garhha (Lotus bearing), where an 
" old crane deprived of strength, stood feigning himself troubled in mind ; and on being 

^ Sacred and Historical Books of' Ceylon, III. 269. 

^ two Jatakas, in Royal Asiatic Society's Journal, New Series, Vol. V. p. 1. 

^ TJpham, " Sacred and Historical Books of Ceylon," Vol. III. pp. 293-94 Baka or Vaka is the common 

name for a Crane, and not a Cormorant. * Johnson's Hitopadesa, p. 103, 

H 255. g 


" asked by a certain Crab at a distance, ' How is it you stand here renouncing food.? ' He 
" replied, ' My means of living are fisli ; and tte talk of the fisherman outside the town, that 
" the fish here are inevitably about to be killed by the fishermen, has been heard. 
" Judging therefore, that for want of subsistence from this quarter, my death is near, I 
" have lost all regard for food.' Then all the Fishes thought amongst themselves, ' On this 
" ' occasion at least he appears our benefactor ; let him therefore be consulted how we 
" ' are to act. For thus it is said : 

" ' An alliance should be formed with a foe 
" ' who benefits, not with an injurious friend ;^ 
" ' for kindness or injury is the characteristic 
" ' mark of both.' 
" The Fishes said, ' Crane, where are the means of our safety? ' 'Means of safety 
" there are,' said the Crane ; ' another pool ; thither I will carry you one by one.' The 
" Fishes said, through fear, ' Be it so.' The treacherous Crane then having taken the 
" Fishes one by one, and eaten them ia a certain spot, returned and said, ' They have been 
" ' placed by me in another pool.' At length a Crab, said to him, ' Crane, take me there 
" too.' The Crane, longing for the delicate flesh of the Crab, respectfully conveyed him 
" and set him on the ground ; but the Crab, seeing the ground strewed with fish bones 
" thought ' Alas ! I am undone, unfortunate that I am ! WeU, I must now act suitably to 
*' the emergency, for : — 

" ' We ought to fear danger only so long 
" ' as it is distant ; but when we see 
" ' danger near, we ought to fight like 
" ' those who are not afraid ! 
" Moreover — 

" ' When a wise man being attacked, can 
" ' see no safety for himself, he then 
" ' dies fighting with the foe.' 
" With this resolution the Crab tore the throat of the Crane so that he perished." 
The following list gives the names of aU the Jatakas which are represented in a 
sculptured form amongst the Bharhut bas-reliefs. No less than 18 of these scenes 
have their names inscribed either above or below them. While the stories of three 
others, which have lost their inscriptions, are so clearly told, as to leave no doubt 
whatever as to their identification. These three are Nos. 9, 13, and 14. 


1. Miga Jataka - - - - or Deer Birth. 

2. Naga Jataka - - - - or Elephant Birth. 

3. Yava Majhakiya Jataka - - or ? 

4. Muga Pakaya Jataka - - - or ? 

5. Latuwa Jataka - - - or Quail Birth. 

6. Chhadantiya Jataka - - - or Chhadanta Elephant Birth. 

7. Isi Singiya Jitaka^ - - - or Eishi Sringi Birth. 

8. Yambumano Avayesi JMaka* - - or ? 

1 This is more concisely stated in our English proverb — "Better an open foe than a treacherous friend." 

2 Called Nalini Jataka in Ceylon. 3 Called Andhabtuta JMaka in Ceylon. 



9. Kurunga Miga J^taka - - - or Kurunga, Deer Birth. 

10. (Bull and Wolf ) - „ _ 

11. Hansa J4taka - - - - or Groose Birth. 

12. Kinnara JS,taka - - - or Kinnara Birth. 

13. Asadrisa J^taka - - - or Prince Asadrisa Birth. 

14. Dasaratha J^taka -^ - «- or King Dasaratha Birth. 

15. Isi Mige J^taka - - - or Bishi Deer Birth. 

16. TJda Jitaka .. - - - or ? 

17. Seohha Jdtaka - - ■>. or ? 

18. Suj^ta-gahnto J4taka - - - or ? 

19. BidMa or Kukuta Jataka - - or Oat Birth, or, Cock Birth. 

20. Magha Deviya Jataka - - - or Magha Deva — Birth. 

21. Bhisa-haraniya Jataka - - - or ? 

22. Vitura-Punakaya Jataka - - or Vidhura Birth. 

23. niya JMaka - - -, 

24. kata Jataka - ,. - 

1. Miga JItaka. 

The subject of this Jataka has not yet been identified with certainty ; but it seems 
probable that it may represent the Miga Jataka of the Pali Books of Ceylon. According 
to Spence Hardy, Buddha had been a Deer no less than ten times ; and I have got the 
names of several of these J^takas, but they have all got some qualifying epithet to 
distinguish them from the simply named Miga JdtaJca or " Deer Birth." Thus there are 
the Nigrodha Miga, the Vata Miga, the Tipallatha Miga, the Kurunga Miga, the Nandiya 
Miga, and others ; but only one of the Jdtakas is distinguished by the simpler title of 
Miga Jataka. It seems probable, therefore, that this should be the subject of the Bharhut 
bas-relief which bears the same title. I must confess, however, that I cannot trace any 
of the Jataka scenes in the sculpture,^ but as the story is a short one I will here give the 
outline of it from Subhuti's translation, in the hope that others may be more fortunate 
than myself : — 

" In days of yore there reigned a king in Eajagriha, the capital of Magadha. Ai 
" that time the great Bodhisatta had been bom a Deer, and was the king of one 
" thousand other Deer. He had two Fawns named Lakshanaya and Kalaya, — to whom 
" when he grew old he gave up his sovereignty. Then followed a famine, when all the 
•' wild animals suffered severely from the scarcity of food, as the people set snares and 
" traps to catch the Deer which ate their corn, so that many of them were killed. Then 
" Bodhisat addressed his two successors and advised them to withdraw with their herds to 
" the foot of mount Aramira during the reaping season, after which they might return to 
" the old forest. Now the Koyal Deer named Kala was foolish, and he conducted his herd 
" near villages during the day time, so that many of them were killed before he reached 
" the mountain. But the Eoyal Deer named Lakshana was wise — and led his herd far 
" away from the villages during the night time — so that he reached the mountain in 

1 See Plate XXV. 
H 2 


" safety. At the end of four montlis Lakshana returned to the forest with his 500 
" followers, while his brother Kala, having lost all his followers, returned alone. So the 
" former was received with joy, but the latter with disgrace. The Monk Sariputra, who 
" now leads his followers in the right path of religion and virtue was then the Royal Deer 
" Lakshana, and the Monk Devadatta, who now pei^erts all his followers, was then the 
" Eoyal' Deer Kala." 

As Veil as I can judge there is ho portion of this legend represented in the Bharhut 
sculpture. If the human figures were omitted the Roebuck with his five Dbes might be 
taken for the wise Lakshana, and the solitary Ro'e swimming the river w'ould be the 
foolish Roe KMa. But the presence of the' human figures seems to me afltogether to 
preclude this identification. 

The Miga Jdtaha is also mentioned by Bishop Bigandet, in the following terms.^ " He 
" (Buddha) related to them the Dsat Miga, by which he showed to them that during 
" former existences Rahula had distinguished himself, in a conspicuous manner, by his 
" excellent and admirable disposition. As a reward for his good behaviour and high 
" mental qualifications he was made Patziri (PratyeM). His mind continuing to expand 
" in a manner almost miraculous he became a Rahaiida with millions of Nats (Devas)." 

2. NiGA JiTAKA. 

In this scene the principal actors are an Elephant and a Crab which has seized the 
Elephant by the right hind leg.^ Two other Elephants appear behind, and there is a 
pond full of fish from which the Crab has just issued. The legend here represented is the 
Ndga JdtaJca, or " Elephant birth," but in Ceylon it is better known by the name of 
Karhataha Jdtaka, or the " Crab birth." The former, however, is the correct name, as in 
the legend here represented Buddha is the King of the Elephants, and therefore the 
Jataka, or Birth, must of necessity have been named after him. For this identification I 
am indebted to the learned Buddhist priest Subhuti of Vaskaduve in Ceylon, who has 
also kindly furnished me with an English translation of the Jataka, of which the following 
is a pretty full summary : — 

" In times past when Raja Brahmadatta reigned in Benares there lived in a certain 
" pond a gigantic Crab. Near this pond, which was named after the Crab, there lived a 
" herd of Elephants under a king or leader of their own. Whenever the herd went 
" down to the pond to feed on the roots of the Lotus, the great Crab would seize one of 
" them by the hind leg, and hold it fast until it died from exhaaistion, when the Crab 
" would feed on the carcass at his leisure. Now it happened at this time that Bodhisat 
" was conceived in the womb of the Queen Elephant, who retired to a secluded part of 
" the forest and in due course gave birth to the ' Discoverer of Truth.' When Bodhisat 
" grew up he chose a large female Elephant for his mate, and taking with him his mother 
" and his mate he proceeded to the neighbourhood of the crab pond to pay a visit to his 
" father. When Bodhisat heard that the Crab was in the habit of killing many of the 
" Elephants that went down to the pond, he said to his parent, ' Father, charge me with 
» ' the work of destroying this Crab.' But his father replied, ' Son, do not ask this— 
" ' that Crab has killed many Elephants, therefore you must not go near the pond.' But 

1 Legend of the Burmese Buddha, p, 175, 2 See Plate XXV. 

JATAKAS or births of BUDDHA. 53 

" arrogating to himself the dangerous task of killing the Crab, Bodhisat led a herd of 
" Elephants down to the bank of the pond and going into the water they all fed on the 
" roots of the Lotus. On leaving the pond Bodhisat brought up the rear when the great 
" Crab seized him by the hind leg, and dragged him towards his hole. Then Bodhisat 
" cried out for his life — and the herd of Elephants roared, too, through fear and fled away 
'' from the pond. Then Bodhisat cried out to his mate, ' meritorious spouse-loving 
" ' she-elephant, the big and bold-eyed Crab, who lives in this pond has seized me by one 
" ' of the hind legs, why therefore do you leave me ? ' Hearing this the female 
" Elephant drew near to him and said, ' Keep up your courage, for even if I were 
*' ' offered ten thousand yojanas of (land in) Dambadiwa, I would not forsake thee.' 
" Then turning to the Crab she said, ' gold coloured one of great size, the King and 
" ' Chief of all Crabs, I pray thee to let go my husband, the King of Elephants.' Then 
" the Crab, moved by her words, and ignorant of danger, loosened his hold on Bodhisat, 
" who no sooner felt himself free than he set his foot on the back of the Crab and 
" crushed him. So the Crab died and Bodhisat roared with delight — and the rest of the 
" herd trampling on the Crab his body was crushed to pieces. But the two big claws 
*' stiU remained in the pond, from whence they were carried into the Granges. Here one 
*' claw was caught by the Dasaba Princes, who made it into a drum to be used at their 
" festive gathering ; while the other claw was carried down to the Ocean, where it was 
" seized by the Asuras who made it into a drum to be played at their festivals." 

3. Yava-Majhakiya JItaka. 

The title of this Jataka is not to be found in the Ceylon list of Buddha's 550 
previous births, neither has the story yet been identified by Subhuti. But I have myself 
been fortunate enough to recognise in it a very striking representation of the legend of 
UpaTcosd, the young wife of Vararuchi, as told in the Vrihat Eatha of Kshemendra, and in 
the Katha Saritsdgara of Soma Deva. Subhuti suggests that Majhakiya is the name of a 
country, which is likely enough, but it has not yet been of any assistance in identifying 
the Bharhut sculpture with any one of the Pali Jatakas of Ceylon. Perhaps the title 
may simply mean the " Young woman Jataka." 

The story of Upakosa, as told by Kshemendra in the Yrihat Katha has been trans- 
lated by Dr. Biihler, and as it would be spoilt by curtailment, I now give it at full 
length.-*^ On comparing the sculpture with the story the principal figures can be 
recognized at once. In the midst is King Nanda seated on the throne ; to the right is 
the young wife Upakosa, pointing to the open baskets ; and in the foreground are the 
four baskets containing her four lovers. Three of the baskets have been opened, thus 
exposing the lovers faces, while the fourth has just arrived on the shoulders of two 
porters. I wish to draw particular attention to the baskets, as the word used by 
Kshemendra is ManjusM, which means a " basket " and not a box : — 

From the Vrihat-lcatha. 

" Having heard this (story of the origin of Pataliputra), and having received all 

" sciences from my teacher, I (Yararuchi) who dwelt at my ease, obtained in marriage 

" the daughter of Guru Upavarsha, called Upakos^. After I married Upakosa whose* 

" eyes resembled blue lotuses, I became the empire over which Cupid rules and vessel 

1 See Indian Antiquary, Vol. 1, p. 332. 


" of all happiness. WMlst I, living in tte company of Vyadi and Indradatta, acquired 
" tlie fame of omniscience, a pupil of Varsha, Panini by name, who was formerly a 
" blocktead, obtained by virtue of Ms austerities, keeping bis senses in subjection, a new 
" grammar from Siva. Disputing with me for eight days he proved himself an opponent 
" of equal force. When I conquered him at the end of that period, Hara, bewildering 
" me by a growl, bereft me, through anger, of the recollection of Indra's grammar. 
" After I had suddenly forgotten that work I resolved to perform austerities in order 
" to obtain the sight of Bharga, who is the destroyer of Cupid, and the wish-fulfilling 
" husband of Parvati, and I placed money for the household expenses in the hands of a 
" neighbour, a Vaniya called Hiranyagupta. After I was gone my faithful UpakosS., 
" though left alone in the beauty of her fresh youth, being versed in the Vedas, 
" performed the vow which is becoming for wives whose husbands are absent. Time 
" passed on, and once the joung foujdar of the King, the domestic priest, and the mvnister 
" saw that beauty with the swan-like gait, who bathed daily, and played with the thick 
" spray, which had the appearance of a thin and transparent garment, whose broad hips 
" resembled sand-banks, who was dark blue in colour, whose eyes had the appearance of 
" newly-opened lotuses, and who was a bud of Cupid, going like Yamuna to the Granges. 
" Gazing at her all three fell in love with her and apart from each other. First amongst 
" them the son of the Minister said to her, ' Love me.' She who had finished bathing, 
" seeing that night had come, became afraid and spoke to him. ' Be it so, on the third 
" day at night-fall I wiU meet you secretly.' Speaking thus to him she went. After 
" leaving him she addressed the domestic priest to this effect, ' On the third day hence, 
" in the second watch of the night I shall be at your disposal.' Turning away from him 
" she said to the Poujdar, ' On the third day hence, in the third watch of the night I am 
" ready to do your will.' After she had made this assignation, he let her go, and she 
" went home, filling as it were, by her frightened glances the sky with lotuses." 

" Being in want of her husband's money she tried to remedy its concealment (by 
" the banker). But Hiranyagupta asked her for an assignation in her house. She said 
" to him, ' On the third day hence, at the end of the night, I will obey thee, what harm 
" ' is there (in my doing it) ? ' She told that story to her domestics. "When the third 
" day had come, the excellent minister, trembling and having lost all control over 
" himself, entered in the night her house, where the lamps had been extinguished. 
" Upakos^ called him by his name, and said, ' On you I have placed my affection.' At 
" her order he entered a dark room in the interior of the house." 

" There the servant maids smeared for a long time the limbs of the lover with the 
" soft unguent consisting of oil lamp soot. But when in the second watch of the night 
" the domestic priest came in haste, Upakos4 showed to the (first lover) an open 
" wooden box, said ' Enter quickly here comes the master of the house,' and made him 
" enter it. Closing it with an iron bolt, she said to the domestic priest, ' You must not 
" ' touch me without having bathed.' He also was treated in the same manner (as the 
" first lover). When he had been anointed with oil and soot the third also came 
•' Forsooth, who escapes being deceived and made a fool of by the rogue Cupid. After 
" the priest, overwhelmed with fear, had been disposed of in the same box (as the first 
" lover) the third also, in his turn, was made to resemble a goblin. At the end of the 
" night the excellent Yaniya, Hiranyagupta arrived, and the Foujdar was concealed 
" likewise in the wooden box. Then Upakosa facing the box spoke to the Vaniy4, who 


" was sitting at his ease on an excellent seat, ' Grive me the deposit.' Hiranyagupta 
" replied ' Love me, sweet smiling one, I have the money, fair-browed one, which 
" ' your husband deposited with me V Hearing this she exclaimed in a loud voice, 
" ' Hear ye deities of the house, be witnesses ye goblins ; he has my property.' 
" Speaking thus she defaced him also with lamp soot. Then she said, ' The night 
" ' has passed, go.' Quickly the Vinia went forth, covering his face from fear of the 
'' people who are about early. Bereft of his garments, he was hooted on the road by the 
" people. Wise Upakosa who had thus protected her virtue, after his departure, 
" started early for the audience hall of King Nanda. The King was informed that the 
" daughter of Upavarsha, the faithful wife of Vararuchi had come, and he honoured her 
" there. She said, '0 King, the Vaniya Hiranyagupta conceals great wealth which 
" ' my husband deposited with him. It is now for you. Lord, to give orders.' After 
" that, when that liar had been summoned and came, Upakos4 ^said, ' Lord, at home I 
" ' have witnesses ; order my household gods to be brought, who are kept in a box ; 
" ' they will declare the truth.' The basket box was brought at the King's command 
" and placed by the bearers in the midst of the assembly. Then the faithful wife spoke 
" again. ' Ho ye deities, who are worthy of constant worship, tell the truth for my 
" ' sake. If you remain silent in this matter of evidence, I shall quickly burn the 
" ' basket.' Hearing this, they said, full of fear, ' Forsooth, thy property is in the hands 
" ' of Hiranyagupta, we three are witnesses to that.' All present in the assembly who 
" heard this miraculous answer were astonished, they opened the basket and saw the 
" naked men smeared with soot. When the King had been informed of the circum- 
" stances of the case, he punished them by a fine and honoured Upakosa as his 
" spiritual sister. About this time I (Vararuchi), by the grace of Sambhu, remembered 
" the grammar learned with joy the news about my house and went to visit my teacher. 
'' The story of Upakosa." 

The version of the legend given by Somadeva in the Katha 8cmtsdga/ra is almost the 
same as that of Kshemendra — as will be seen by the following summary :^ — " During the 
" absence of her husband Upakosa became the object of the addresses of the King's 
" family priest, the commander of the guards, the Prince's tutor, and her husband's 
" banker. She made appointments with them all to come to her house on the same 
" night. At the expiration of the first watch of the night the preceptor of the Prince 
" arrived. Upakosa affected to receive him with great delight ; and, after some conver- 
" sation, desired him to take a bath, which her handmaidens had prepared. The 
" preceptor made no objection ; the bath was placed in a dark room, his own clothes 
" were taken away, and in their place he was supplied with sheets, smeared with lamp- 
" black oil and perfumes. When sufficiently rubbed, the women exclaimed, ' Alas, here 
" ' arrives our master's particular friend.' Thereupon they hurried the poor man into a 
" basket, well fastened by a bolt outside, and, in the same way, they disposed of the 
" priest and commander of the guard. From the banker Upakosa demanded her 
" husband's money, and leading him near the closed basket, spoke aloud, and made him 
" promise that she should have it. A bath was then proposed, but before it could be 
" enjoyed, daylight appeared, and the banker was glad to depart." 

1 Ancient and Mediseval India, by Mrs. Manning, II. 316. Her abstract is taken from H. H. Wilson, 
Works, Vol. III. 


" Next day, Upasoka presented a petition to King Nanda, saying that the banker 
" sought to appropriate property entrusted to him by her absent husband, Vararuchi. 
" The banker was then summoned into court, and Upasoka said that the household gods 
" which her husband had left in baskets could give witness. The King having sent for 
" the baskets, Upasoka said, ' Speak, gods, and declare what you have overheard this 
" ' banker say in our dwelling. If you are silent, I will unhouse you in this presence.' 
" The men in the baskets acknowledged that they had heard the banker admit that he 
" possessed wealth belonging to the husband of Upasoka. The court was amazed, and 
" the terrified banker promised restitution. The King now begged for a sight of these 
" household gods, and out came the culprits like lumps of darkness ; and being recog- 
" nized, they were not only exposed to ridicule, but banished as criminals from the 
" kingdom, whilst Upasoka excited the admiration and esteem of the whole city."-^ 

A much more modern version of the same legend may be found in the Bahm-dAnish, 
in the story of the merchant Hasan and Gauhar, daughter of a Parsa or (Devotee), of 
which the following is an abridgment : — 

A merchant named Hasan, when out hunting met a very beautiful girl, when the 
two at once fell in love with each other. As she was the daughter of a devotee, Hasan 
was in despair ; but by her instructions he became a very assiduous attendant at prayers, 
and so managed to obtain the father's consent to their marriage. Shortly afterwards 
Hasan became poor, and his wife, who was named Grauhar, or the "Pearl," having 
embroidered a piece of cloth, he took it to the bazaar for sale. When the Kotw&l saw 
this fine piece of embroidery he accused the merchant of having stolen it, and hearing 
that Hasan's wife was very beautiful, he seized her also, and sent them both to the Vazir, 
who put them in prison. At night they were released by the Kotwal's servant, who had 
fallen in love with Gauhar. 

After various adventures they settled in another city, where Hasan was soon after- 
wards imprisoned on a false accusation. His wife went at once to the Kotwal to demand 
justice, but the KotwHl fell in love with her, and told her that her husband could only 
be released by her acceding to his wishes. Feigning consent, she pointed out her house 
to him, and fixed that very night for his visit. She then went to the court of the Kazi 
to complain of the Kotwal's conduct ; but the one was no better than the other, for the 
Kazi having also fallen in love with her would only agree to release her husband on the 
same terms as proposed by the Kotw&l. Again she feigned consent, and fixed that night 
for his visit, but a little later than the time appointed for the Kotwal. 

On her way home Gauhar bought two bottles of wine for the entertainment of her 
guests. When the Kotwal arrived, she proposed that as the whole night was before them 
for enjoyment he had better begin the evening with wine. So the Kotwal drank, and 
gradually became tipsy. Then there was a cry that the Kazi is coming, and the Kotwal, 
being frightened, begged Gauhar to hide him. Unfortunately there was no accessible 
place for concealment, except a large earthen vessel, which stood in the room. So the 
Kotwal was squeezed into this vessel, and its mouth was securely fastened by Gauhar. 

The Kazi then came in and was treated to wine in the same way as the Kotwal, and 
he was nearly tipsy, when he heard a loud knocking at the door, and a cry of the " Vazir 

1 It will be observed that the lady's name, which was UpakosS, in the Vrihat-Katha has been changed by 
ti-ansposition to Upasoka in the Katha SaritsS.gara. 


is coming." Being frightened he begged the lady to conceal him somewhere, so she put 
him in a large gunny bag, and fastened the mouth of it securely. 

Grauhar then went to sleep, and in the morning she hired coolies to carry the earthen 
jar and the sack, and took them before the King, from whom she demanded justice. Then 
the jar and the sack being opened, the Kotwal and the Kazi were dragged out and 
sentenced to be beheaded, and the merchant Hasan was released from prison, and returned 
home to his faithful wife Grauhar the " Pearl." 

A similar story still lingers amongst the people in other places, as may be seen in 
the following legend of Dinajpur, entitled the Touchstone, of which only the latter part 
need be quoted.'^ "As the Kotwalwas going round the city he saw the girl on the roof, 
" and said to the garland maker, ' I will come and see your sister to-night.' She said, 
" ' My sister has made a vow that no one shall come and visit her unless he presents 
" 'her with a touchstone.' The Kotwal promised it, and went away. After this the 
" King's councillor saw the girl, and said to the garland maker, ' I will come and visit 
" your sister to-night.' By the girl's order the garland maker agreed, and he said he 
" would come at one watch of the night. After this the prime minister came, and, 
" having made an arrangement that he should come at the second watch in the night, 
" he went away. And at last the King himself came out to enjoy the air, and when he 
" saw the girl on the roof, he said he would come at the last watch of the night. When 
" the girl heard they were all coming, she prepared a large pot, and mixed in it two 
" seers of milk and one seer of water, and put it on the fire, and also brought some grass 
" and a jar of water, and placed them ready, and when it was evening she put a stool 
" near the fire for herself, and another stool for the other people to sit on, and proceeded 
" to mix the milk and water. In the meantime the Kotwal come, bringing the touch- 
" stone with him ; so the girl took it and invited him to drink the milk and water which 
" she had prepared, and they talked together until the first watch of the night had 
" passed away. At that time, according to previous arrangement, the councillor came, 
" and when he knocked at the door the Kotwal asked the girl who it was, and was very 
" much frightened to hear it was the King's councillor, and asked where hq could hide 
" himself. She then smeared him all over with molasses, and poured water on him, and 
" covered the whole of his body with cotton wool, and fastened him in the window. 
" After that the councillor came in and sat down and began to talk, and she gave him 
" some milk and water, and so the second watch of the night passed. After that 
" the King's prime minister came and knocked at the door, and the councillor asked the 
" girl who it was^ and when she told him, he was exceedingly alarmed and asked where 
" he could hide. She told him she had placed the Kotwal in the window and covered 
" him with cotton wool, and made a frightful object of him ; and then she covered the 
" councillor with the mat, and opened the door to the prime minister. He came into the 
" house and sat down on the stool, and, as before, the girl talked with him, and so the 
" third watch of the night passed away. Then the King himself came and knocked at 
" the door, and the prime minister inquired who it was, and as soon as he heard he was 
" very much frightened and asked where he could hide, as he was in danger of his life ; 
" so the girl took him near the frightful looking Kotwal and put him under a screen of 
" bamboo, and then opened the door to the King. The King came in and talked to the 

1 See the Indian Antiquary, vol, II. p. 359, by G. H. Damant, C.S. 
B 255. I 


" girl and meantime the councillor from beneath his mat, and prime minister from 
" behind his screen, seeing the hideous form of the Kotwal, became excessively frightened. 
" Just at that moment the King happened to be looking round on every side of the 
" house, and seeing the Kotwal he said ' "What is that fastened there V The girl replied, 
" ' Oh, there is a young Eakshara tied there.' As soon as the KotwM heard that he 
" leaped out, and the King seeing him thought, ' He wiU eat me ; ' the councillor thought, 
" ' He will eat me ;' the prime minister thought. ' He will eat me ;' so they all, one 
" after the other ran away to their own houses, and the Kotwal also went to his house." 

4, MuGHA Pakkha JItaka. 

The Pillar on which this scene is sculptured was removed from Bharhut to 
Batanmdra seven generations back along with several other Pillars and some portions 
of the Eastern G-ateway. The present Thakur of Batanmara very kindly allowed me to 
examine ^the whole of his castle where these remains of the Bharhut Bailing were 
inserted some two hundred years ago. Unfortunately this Jataka Pillar was laid flat in 
the floor of the arcade, where it had been trodden over daily, but luckily only by bare feet, 
otherwise the inscription, which is engraved on the raised edge of the medallion, would 
have disappeared altogether. The sculpture itseK has suffered very little, owing partly 
to the flinty hardness of the stone and partly to its being sunk below the surrounding 
rim. But the inscription has been worn away at the edges so that the letters are not 
very distinct. I read it as Mugwphakwya Jataka or Muga paka/ya Jataka, which I take 
to [be the same title as the Muga pakhJia Jataka of the Ceylonese list. Unfortimately 
I have not received any translation of this JMaka, as my respected friend Subhuti was 
under the impression that the scene belonged to the famous Wessantara J4taka. But this 
can hardly be the case, as the story of the Prince Wessantara requires his wife 
as well as his two children to appear on the scene. Besides which on the right hand 
of the sculpture there is a seated Eishi, who is apparently addressing a royal personage 
standing before him: with clasped hands.'^ Now there is no Kishi in the story of Prince 
Wessantara. So that the sculptured scenes appear to me to offer no points in common 
with his history save a chariot standing in the foreground. 

5. Latcwa JItaka, 

In Ceylon this legend is called the Latukika Jataka.^ When I first saw the Bharhut 
sculpture I recognised the story as one which I had heard in Kashmir as long ago as 
1839. I have lately received both the text and a translation of the Jataka from my 
good friend Subhuti, the learned Buddhist priest of Ceylon. As the scenes represented 
in the Bharhut bas-reliefs agree in almost every minute detail with the Singhalese Pali 
version of the legend, I will here give the latter at some length from Subhuti's version : 

" In days of yore when Brahmadatta was Raja of Benares, Bodhisatta was born as 
" an Elephant, and was the leader of 80,000 other Elephants, it happened that a Latukika 
" built her nest on a certain pathway, and laid her eggs in it. One day when she was 
" sitting in her nest watching her young ones who were stiU unable to fly, she was 
" frightened by the appearance of Bodhisatta attended by his herd of 80,000 Elephants. 
" Seeing the imminent danger to which her young brood were exposed she straightway 

1 See Plate XXV. ^ Latukika, « The diminutive Indian Quail," ChUders, Pali Dictionary, in voce. 


" flew towards the leading Elephant Bodhisatta and beBOUght him to save her young 
" ones from being crushed under the huge feet of his herd. Moved by the earnest 
" appeal of the mother bird, Bodhisatta stood over her nest until all the Elephants had 
" passed by. He then left himself, first warning the bird that a Solitmy Elephant of 
" savage temper would shortly come by this way, and might do her little ones some 
" harm. As one danger often succeeds another, the poor Latukika was not yet relieved 
" from her fears, but was still dreading the approach of an enemy whom no entreaties 
" might move. Then seeing the Solitary Elephant approaching she flew towards him. 
" ' noble Elephant who livest in the forest, I adore ,thee with my two wings, and 
" ' humbly beseech thee to spare my young ones who have only just escaped from a 
" ' threatening danger.' But her prayer was in vain, for the savage Elephant unmoved 
" by her entreaties answered, ' "What can a poor thing like you do if I should harm your 
" young ones 1" And trampled them to death with his left foot. 

" Then the heart-broken Latukika alighting on the branch of a tree and brooding on 
" revenge exclaimed, ' You shall see what a weak little bird can do against thy boasted 
" strength.' So she then became assiduous in her attentions to a Crow, who when he heard 
" her story promised to peck the eyes of the Elephant as a reward for her services. In a 
" similar way she secured the services of a Flesh-fly and a Frog. Then the Crow pecked 
" at the eyes of the Elephant, and the Flesh-fly laid her eggs in the wounds, which soon 
" made him blind. Lastly, the Frog, who had taken up his position on a hill, allured the 
" Elephant by his croaking to believe that water was near. Then descending the hill he 
" croaked again, and the Elephant attempting to follow him fell headlong down the rocks 
" and was killed. Then the Latukika seeing the Elephant lying dead at the foot of the 
" hill, alighted on his body and walked to and fro, and being fully satisfied with the 
" completion of her revenge flew away." 

The close agreement between the scenes of the Bharhut Scidpture and the Sinhalese 
version of the legend is very remarkable. In the medallion we see : — 1st. The Bird's 
nest with the young ones lying on the ground beneath the Elephant's foot. 2nd. The 
Bird sitting on the tree and brooding over her revenge. 3rd. The attack of the Crow 
and the Flesh-fly, the former on the Elephant's head the latter on his eye. 4th. The 
Elephant running away frightened with his tail between his legs. 5th. The Frog seated 
on the rooky mount ; and 6th. The fall of the Elephant down the rocky cliff. . 

I have not the means of referring to the collections of tales preserved in the Katha 
Saritsagara, but I have no doubt that this tale of the Latukika and the 8olita/iry Ehjphant 
was included in one or both of them, as the version of the legend as told to me in 
Kashmir in 1839 by a Muhammadan accords generally with the story of the Buddhist 
Jitaka, and has even preserved some of its petty details with wonderful exactness. 
Such are the sitting of the bereaved Bird on the branch of a tree after the death of her 
young ones, when she meditates on revenge, and the death of the Elephant by falling 
down the rocks, although the Frog is omitted. This late Kashmiri version I venture to 
give in the words in which I embodied it in Kashmir in 1839, to show the strong vitality 
of a popular story. The story was told to me by a Muhammadan, who had only just 
heard it himself, and who was much struck by the punishment of the Elephant by such 
apparently insignificant means : — 

I 2 



The Elephant and the Thrush, 
Writkn in Kashmvr, 1839. 

Once a Thrush, in search of food, 
Guardless left her nestled brood 
Hanging o'er a streamlet's brim 
From a young tree, tall and slim, 
Backwards, forwards, to and fro, 
Swinging as the wind did blow. 

Led by hunger to this spray, 
Chanced an Elephant to stray, 
And the delicate green stem 
To a mouthful tempted him. 
So his trunk he gently wound 
Firmly that young branch around. 
Pulling with a quiet stress. 
Used when certain of success. 
Broke the branch, while with a scream. 
Nest and brood fell in the stream. 
Which soon swept them all away. 
While the Elephant did stay. 
Witless of the harm he'd done 
Slowly, quietly munching on — 
Still he munched, and still he stayed, 
Revelling in the leafy shade; [munched 
Still he munched, and munched, and 
Till he'd comfortably lunched. 

When the Thrush came back anon 
And saw her little ones were gone. 
With a painful scream and shrill. 
All the food dropped from her bill; 
On a tree she sate hard by 
Wailing in her agony. [she, 

" Who hath wrought their death?" thought 
" Who hath done this wrong to me 
" I that ne'er hurt living form?" 
(But the Thrush forgot the worm 
Proving birds like men are prone 
To forget sins of their own — ) 
When the Elephant espying 
Who was still the branches eyeing, 
Came conviction unto her 
That he was the murderer — 
But the thought gave no relief, 
Adding only to her grief, 

For upon so great a foe, 

How could she avenge her woe. 

Then afresh her shrilly scream 
Startled the rushing mountain stream. 
Silent next she thought upon 
All her friends; but there was none 
Able 'gainst a foe so strong 
To avenge her cruel wrong — 
Then she thought her of all those 
Who by nature are his foes; — 
Tiger fierce, Rhinoceros, — 
BuflFalo that dares to toss 
His wide horns with fearless aim 
'Gainst that adamantine frame. 
But tiny birds these monsters knew not, 
And her petty wrongs would rue not — 
Aping mankind to a tittle, 
Just as great men shun the little. 
— Then her shrilly scream once more 
Pierced the sullen torrent's roar — 
But when sorrow's clouds are highest 
Then the Heaven of Hope is nighest — 
Just when her sad heart had failed her 
Sure relief that moment hailed her 
And away she joyous flew 
For the Queen Bee's aid to sue 
And the quick Musquito's too. 

" Sister," said the Great Queen Bee, 
" Thou shalt have such aid from me 
" As my subjects can afford" — 
And the Queen Bee kept her word. 
The Musquitoes, small but able, 
To annoy most irritable. 
Promised also their assistance. 
And, though dwelling at a distance. 
Likewise spake the mountain flood 
He would do all that he could — 
In remembrance of the song 
She had sung to him so long. 

These allies were nothing slack 
To begin their planned attack ; 
On they came, as still as death, 



Holding in their little breath; 
First with weapons sharp and thin, 
Small Musquitoes pierced his skin, 
For their lighter armed stings 
Fitted them for skirmishings. 
In the rear the great Queen Bee 
Marshalled all her chivalry. 

On all sides Musquitoes charge 
For the enemy was large, 
And displayed a warlike front 
Fit the boldest heart to daunt — 
Bound they wheel, advance, pursue, 
As expertest horsemen do. 
With a sharp envenomed sting 
Still for ever harassing — 
Charge and wound, retire, and then. 
To the charge come back again — 
For these cunning little elves, 
"Who have warred with men themselves, 
Are most swift upon the wing. 
Skilled in all manoeuvreing — 
Hovering round their enemy, 
Now they charge, and now they fly ; 
Pierce, and prick, and sting, until 
Their revenge hath had its fill. 

Now the labouring Elephant, 
Tired with fight begins to pant; 
Mad with pain, his trunk he rears. 
Swings his tail, and flaps his ears; 
From his quick trunk frequent throws 
Clouds of dust upon his foes — 
Still the tireless little flies, 
Buzzing round his winking eyes, 
Keep him swinging, flapping ever, 
In a fruitless vain endeavour. 
To break through their wings or centres, 
An d get rid of his tormentors; — 
Thousands in its angry tosses 

Slew he with his quick proboscis; 

Thousands slain, if slain were any 

What are thousands 'mongst so many? 

He was big and powerful too. 

But alone what could he do? 

He fought well, but they fought better. 

He was great, their odds were greater — 

So hatchets small, with many a blow. 

Lay the forest giant low ; 

So numerous droppings wear a stone. 

So life's in many minutes gone. 

Still the tireless little fellows 

Blew their buzzing trumpet bellows. 

Sounds of war, at midnight heard. 

Much by sleepy people feared — 

Still they pricked, and pierced, and stang, 

Till with his "roars the forest rang — 

When finding fruitless all his slaughter. 

Off the mad beast rushed for water. 

Then advanced the Bee reserve. 
Troops of mettle and tried nerve. 
With their longer, stronger lances, 
To his eyes made quick advances. 
Piercing twixt his eyelids, they 
Made him blind unto his way, 
On he rushed not seeing whither 
And they all rushed on together. 

Then was heard the mountain torrent 
Swelling with a mighty current 
Craggy rocks and boulders o'er 
Like the sullen thunders' roar .. 
In the chasmous dell beneath. 
Hearing which the Elephant 
Down that perilous descent 
Madly plunging met his death. 
And the Thrush soon saw the Crow 
Feeding on her giant foe. 

6. Chhadantiya JItaka. 

This bas-relief was broken into two pieces at least 15D years ago, when the lower 
naif was carried away to Pathora by the Jagirdar along with many other sculptures. 
The upper half was first found at Barhut, but the lower half was only discovered 
10 months later by Babu Jamna Shankar at Pathora, seven miles distant, where it was 


in daily use by a washerman, who beat his clothes upon it;^ The story of the Chhadanta 
Elephant is one of the best known of the Buddhist J^takas. The later form of the 
legend is thus told by Hwen Thsang.^ " When Buddha was a king of the Elephants 
" with six tusks, a hunter who wished to make a prize of those precious teeth disguised 
" himself in a Kashaya, or religious dress, and stringing his bow watched for his prey. 
" The king of the Elephants, out of reverence for the Kashaya, immediately tore out his 
" tusks and presented them to the hunter." The scene of this legend is placed by Hwen 
Thsang in the neighbourhood of the Mrigaddva near Benares. 

The legend is also alluded to in the Dathavansa, or History of the Tooth-relic of 
Gotama Buddha.* " Of that Tathagata, who, being once an Elephant of the Chhadanta 
" tribe, though from being shot by a poisoned arrow, he had his body smeared with blood, 
" (yet) cut oflF his tusks, lustrous with six coloured rays, (and) gave them to the hunter 
" (who pursued him)." In this brief notice there is no allusion to the dx tusks, which 
I had always supposed to be the invention of a much later period. But the discovery of 
the lower half of the Bharhut bas-relief shows that the six-tusked Elephant was known 
at least as early as the time of Asoka. There is, however, no allusion to the sias tusks in 
the Pali version of Ceylon, but only to a single pair of tusks from which issued rays of 
six different colours. 

The J^taka of the Chhadantiya Elephant is extremely curious and interesting, but 
it is much too long to be given in full. I will therefore give only a short summary 
compiled from Subhuti's translation of the legend : — 

Long ago a herd of 8,000 Chhadanta Elephants who had the power of passing 
through the air lived close by a lake named Chhadanta^ not far from the rock Himalaya. 
At that time Bodhisat was the king of the Elephants. His body was white, and his 
mouth and feet were red. His tusks possessed the power of shedding rays of six 
different colours. He lived in a cave with the two Queen Elephants Mahasubhadra and 
Chulla Subhadra, 

The lake Chhadanta was square, with waters blue as sapphire. It was surrounded 
by seven ranges of rocks, named respectively Sv/va/rna, Mame, Swrya, Ohand/ra, JJdaka, 
Mahahdla, and GhullaMla. To the North-east there was a large Banian tree. One day 
the King Elephant having shaken a tree under which his two Queens were standing, 
the flower dust fell on the Elder Queen Mahasubhadra. Whilst only dry sticks, leaves, 
and ants fell on the younger Queen Chulla Subhadra, who from that time cherished a 
hatred of the King on account of his supposed preference for Mahasubhadra. Shortly 
after Chulla Subhadra having seen the King Elephant present sweet fruits, honey, and 
lotus roots to 500 Pase Buddhas, made a similar gift herself, at the same time wishing 
that after her death she might be bom as the daughter of the king of MadM, be named 
Subhadra, and when grown up she might become the wife of the king of Benares ; that 
she should then please her husband so much as to prevail on him to send a hunter to 
shoot the King Elephant with a poisoned arrow, and to cut off his tusks, which emitted 
rays of six different colours. 

All happens according to her wish, and a huntsman named Sonuttara is sent to kill 
the king of the Chhadanta Elephants, and to bring back his tusks. The Queen describes 

1 See Plate XXVI. » Julien's Hwen Thsang, 11. 360. 

' Dathavansa by Mutu Coomsra Swamy, p. 5, c. III. V. 31. 


to Mm the route he is to follow until he reaches the crest of the seventh rocky ridge 
named Suvarna, which surrounds the Chhadanta lake. From this rock he will see the 
huge Banian tree under which lives the king of Chhadanta Elephants. The hunter 
accordingly started on his journey, and having reached the crest of the Suvarna ridge 
he beheld the king standing under the great Banian tree surrounded by his herd of 
8,000 Chhadanta Elephants. Here he stayed some time to watch the king, and having 
observed that he always retired to the same spot after bathing he dug a pit there, and 
covered it carefully over, leaving only one small hole in the middle for his arrow to go 
through. In this pit he hid himself, dressed in a yellow robe like a priest, and when the 
Chhadanta king after his bath retired to his favourite spot, the Hunter drew his bow and 
shot his arrow straight into the navel of the Elephant. The pain was so great that the 
king roared, and trumpeted three times, and the whole of 8,000 Elephants then roared, 
and dispersed in all directions to seek for the shooter. His Queen Mahasubhadra, who 
was supporting him, alone remained. Then reasoning with himself the king of the 
Elephants understood that the arrow had come from the earth beneath, and sending 
Subhadra away he quickly tore up the ground, and lifting the planks began to feel the 
sides of the pit with his trunk. The artful huntsman then placed the yellow robe of 
the priesthood in the Elephant's trunk, and the pacified animal at once drew him out 
unhurt, and thus addressed him : " If a man who is still corrupted by passion, who has 
" not given up worldly passions, or who does not speak the truth puts on the yellow 
" robe he is like a monkey covered with a lion's skin ; if a man suppresses his passions, 
" practices all the moral virtues, spends his time in religious meditation, and speaks the 
" truth, he is fit to wear the yellow robe which is the dress of the Buddhas." 

Being unwilling to kill him in spite of his baseness, the royal Elephant asked the 
Hunter why he had shot him whether on his own account or for another. Then the 
Hunter told him everything, and the Elephant, recognizing all the facts of the story, thus 
addressed him : " ChuUa Subhadra cherishing a hatred against me for a mere trifle has 
" sent you to kill me, and to carry off my tusks. They will, however, be of no use to 
" her, but you may cut them off before I die." The Hunter being unable to reach the 
Elephant's tusks on account of his great height, the animal told him to place the saw in 
his trunk, when this was done he quickly cut off his own tusks, and holding them out 
with his trunk, said, " Friend Hunter, I offer you these tusks not because I am tired of 
" them, nor because I hope to become either Sakra or Brahma after my death, but 
" because I expect to become a Buddha which is millions of times more valuable than 
" they are." The king of the Elephants shortly after died, and the herd burned his 
body on a funeral pile, while innumerable Buddhas standing around chaunted his praises. 

The Hunter Sonuttara, guided by the light of the six-coloured rays of the tusks, 
reached Benares in seven days. Then laying the tusks before the Queen he said, 
" Respected Queen, in your previous birth having cherished hatred against your husband, 
" the king of the Chhadanta 'Elephants, you wished to kiU him. Accordingly I have 
" killed him and here are his tusks." But the Queen then began to reflect that in 
causing the death of such a noble animal she had committed a very cruel deed ; and 
remembering all the virtues of the Elephant king, such a deep sorrow came upon her 
that she died the same day of a broken heart. 

The Bharhut Sculpture agrees generally with the Sinhalese Jitaka ; but there is one 
important difference between them which seems to me, to point to an earlier origin for 


the Bharhut version. In the Pali account the Elephant is a huge animal, so lofty that 
the Hunter cannot reach his tusks and accordingly the royal animal kindly cuts off his 
own tusks and presents them to Hunter. This also is the version of the legend as heard 
by the Chinese pilgrim Hwen Thsang in the seventh century. But in the Bharhut Sculpture 
the Elephant is of the natural size, and is represented as kneeling down to enable the 
Hunter to cut off his tusks with greater ease. 

Another version of this Jataka is given by Mr. Beal from the Chinese.^ In this 
version the young Chhadanta Elephant, who is described as of a white colour, and with 
six tusks, was captured by a Hunter by command of Brahmadatta Eaja of Benares. 
But when the king heard that the young Elephant had been the support of his old 
parents, he gave him his liberty, saying : 

Go and welcome thou faithful Elephant Naga 
Nourish and cherish thy parents as in duty bound, 
I would rather lose my life, and end it now. 
Than cause thee and them the grief of separation. 

7. Isi-SiNGiVA JItaka. 

The story represented in this Sculpture is known in Ceylon as the Ndlmi Jdtaka, 
from the name of the heroine who plays a principal part in the legend,^ The title of 
IsiSmgiya Jdtalea, or the " Rishi Sringa Birth," is altogether unknown in Ceylon ; but 
the subject was at once recognised by M. Minayeff when I showed him the photograph, 
and afterwards by Subhuti, who has kindly furnished me with a full translation of the 
legend. As the subject is not a delicate one, a very short summary of the story will be 
sufficient : — 

In days gone by when Brahmadatta was Eaja of Benares, our great Bodhisat was 
born as a Brahman, who in due time became a joshi and retired to the Himala forest, 
where he perfected himself in knowledge and piety. It happened that a Doe having 
grazed over the spot where Bodhisat had made water, became pregnant, and in due time 
gave birth to a boy who was brought up by the ascetics under the name of Isi 8mge, or 
Rishi Sringa. They clad him in the dress of a recluse, and taught him all the rules 
observed by the ascetics. So that in a short time he became a very learned and a very 
pious Rishi. As his piety and religious merit increased with his years, he acquired such 
power that the marble throne of Sakra king of the Heavens became too hot for him to 
sit upon. Sakra sought for the cause and soon discovered that his throne was threatened 
by the overwhelming piety and religious merit of the Rishi Sringa. He accordingly thought 
of a stratagem to vitiate the purity of the Rishi, and caused a drought throughout the 
country of Benares so that no rain fell there for three whole years. 

The Raja of Benares attempted to stop the drought by performing meritorious acts 
in person, but they were of no avail ; and he was beginning to despair when the god 
Sakra (Indra) appeared to him in a dream and informed him that the drought was 
caused by the prevailing merits of the young ascetic Sringi Rishi, and that it could be 
stopped only by corrupting his purity, which might be accomplished by the Raja's 
daughter Nalini. 

Romantic History of Buddha, p. 366. 2 See Plate XXVI. 


The Princess Nalini accordingly departs for the forest near the Himala mountains, 
where she adopts the dress of an ascetic, and during the absence of Bodhisatta succeeds 
in corrupting the merits of Sringi Eishi, who had never seen a woman. The Princess 
then departed, and the young Rishi became sick with longing for his friend, and entreated 
Bodhisatta to take him to the monastery to which the supposed monk had retired. The 
great Bodhisatta having heard the entreaties of the young monk, perceived that his 
merits had been clouded by some woman, gave him a long address on the dangers of 
intercourse with women, and wound up by telling him that it was very fortunate the 
she-demon had left him without devouring him. 

The young monk trembled at the words of Bodhisatta and besought his forgiveness, 
saying that he would not leave his monastery to go after the woman. He then applied 
himself so assiduously to his religious duties that he acquired a second time the powers 
of a holy Rishi, and when he died, received a new birth in the Brahmaloka. 

In the Bharhut bas-relief there is only a portion of the legend represented in the 
birth of the young Rishi, who is taken up by Bodhisatta himself in the presence of other 
Rishis. The peculiar dress of the Rishis, who were fire worshippers, and the simple 
style of their dwelling form the only interesting parts of this curious but repulsive 

The Sringi Rishi would seem to have been rather prone to temptation, as Hwen 
Thsang records the temptation and fall of the Rishi Ekasringa.'^ 

8. Yambumane Avayesi JItaka. 

In the Pali books of Ceylon this legend is known as the Andhabhuta Jdtaha, or 
"Blind-man Birth." This identification is due to the kindness of Subhuti who also 
furnished me with a translation of the Jataka from which I have made the following 
summary : — 

In days of yore there was a virtuous Raja in Benares named Brahmadatta. By his 
Queen he had a son who was comely in person, and well versed in every branch of 
science. But he was an inveterate gambler, and when playing the gold dice on the silver 
board with his minister he would recite the following verse : — 

Sabbd nodi wankayatd, 

Sabhe Tcatthamayo wand, 

Sabbittho haropdpa 

LahhamaTidte wdtake. 

Like as rivers all meander, 
Like as forests teem with wood, 
So would every woman wander 
From the right way if she could. 

The minister finding his wealth nearly exhausted began to think that his want of 
success must be due to the truth of the king's stanza, and he resolved to test it by taking 
to wife a woman who had never seen a man. So he procured a newly-born female child 
and had her brought up in a secluded house where she saw none but women. As she 
grew up very beautiful the minister married her, and when he next went to gamble, 

1 Julien's Hwen Thsang, II. 124. 
H 255. K 


no sooner had the king repeated his customary stanza than the minister added " my wife 
excepted." As the king continued to lose from that day he got angry, and determined to 
corrupt the minister's wife. So he employed a young man of handsome appearance to 
open a shop near the minister's house. Here the shopkeeper having observed an old 
woman who went out and came back again daily with a basket, one day rushed suddenly 
before her and embraced her, and declared himself her long lost son. So they became 
friends, and the shopkeeper prevailed on his new mother to take all the goods required 
for the house from him without payment. Some months had passed in this way when 
the shopkeeper pretended to be very sick, and when the old woman inquired what was the 
matter with him he told her that he had heard so much of the beauty of her young 
mistress that he had become sick from love and could get no rest, and that he was sure 
he would not recover until he had seen her face. So the old woman arranged that he 
should be carried into the house in her basket, and when the minister's wife saw him she 
was so fascinated that she kept him for two days in her private apartments. After some 
time the young shopkeeper obtained such influence over her that she made no opposition 
when her lover proposed to knock the minister on the head. Accordingly when her 
husband returned the young wife asked him to play the harp blindfolded so that she 
might dance in his presence unabashed, and further that she might be allowed to give 
him a knock on the head. To this the fond old minister consented. No sooner was he 
blindfolded than the shopkeeper appeared on the scene and the two lovers danced together 
while the blindfolded minister played on the harp. Suddenly the young shopkeeper gave 
him such a tremendous blow on the head that " his deep-sunken eyeballs were almost 
thrown out of their sockets," and before he recovered from the blow the lover had gone 
back in the basket to his shop. 

From the day that his wife had proved untrue the minister's good luck had forsaken 
him, and when the king told him of the faithless conduct of his wife, he returned to his 
house quite dejected and accused her of incontinence. But the cunning woman protested 
her innocence, and declared that she would cast herself into the fire as a proof of her 
virtue. Having sent timely notice to her lover, when the day appointed for the ordeal 
arrived, and the wife was ready to cast herself into the fire, the shopkeeper suddenly 
rushed on the scene, and seizing her by the hand, exclaimed, " Why does this hard- 
" hearted Brahman thus treat this innocent young woman?" On which the wife at once 
cried out, " I am willing to take my oath, and to undergo this trial by fire, that except 
" this young shopkeeper who has just stopped me from entering the fire, no other man 
" but my husband the minister has ever touched me." But the minister perceived her 
cunning, and the young woman was turned out of his house. 

The Bharhut sculpture represents the principal scene of the legend where the blind- 
folded husband plays the harp while his wife and her lover dance before him. As the 
scene is said to have taken place in the" minister's house, the building in the bas-relief 
must represent an Indian private house of the better sort shortly after the time of Asoka. 
The Sinhalese name of AndMbTmta Mtaha, or the " Blind-man Birth," is perhaps only a 
popular description of the scene derived from the principal figure. Of the title inscribed 
above the Bharhut sculpture, 

Ycmhwmome avayesi Jdtakam, 
I am unable to offer any explanation. 


The Pillar on •wMcli the scene is represented is now at Pathora, seven miles distant 
from Bharhut, from whence it was carried away four generations back, when the ancestors 
of the present Jdgvrda/r received his estate from the reigning Baja. A portion of each side 
of the Pillar, as far as the curved sockets for the rails extended, has been cut away to 
make it fit into its present position as a stone beam in a recently erected cenotaph 
outside the village of Pathora. The medallion face of the Pillar has luckily been placed 
inside the building, but it is of course placed sideways, and was thickly coated with 
whitewash. Much of the whitewash was removed with acetic acid, but enough of it 
still remains to spoil any attempt at making a perfect photograph. The accompanying 
photograph is, however, sufficiently good to show all the details of the dresses as well 
as all the letters of the inscription.^ 


The bas-relief representing this curious legend was found in its present condition 
in a small village one mile and a half from Bharhut. This and the following sculpture 
once formed the bosses or medallions of a single bar of the Bailing. The stone was 
carried oflF long ago, and afterwards split down the middle so as to separate the two 
sculptured scenes. All the side portions of the bar, including its inscription, were cut 
away.^ But the story is too clearly told in the sculpture to require a label, and the 
instant I saw it I recognized it as the Kwrwnga-miga Jdtaka, or " Kurunga-Deer Birth." 
This legend has been fortunate in being translated by the eminent Pali scholar Mr. V. 
Fausboll. I possess also a translation by the learned Buddhist priest Subhuti. I here 
annex Mr. FausboU's version : — ^ 

" In times past, while Brahmadatta reigned in Bar^nasi, Bodhisatta having become 
a Kurunga-deer, took up his abode in the wood, in a thicket not far from a lake. 
At the top of a tree not far from that lake sat a Woodpecker, and in the lake there 
lived a Tortoise. Thus those three companions lived pleasantly together. Then a 
Deer-hunter, roaming in the wood, having seen Bodhisatta's footmarks near a water- 
pool, (and) having placed a trap made of leather (thongs, and as strong) as an iron 
chain, went (his way). ■ Bodhisatta, having come to drink water, (and being) caught 
in the trap during the first watch (of the night) shrieked (frantically) as a prisoner. 
At his shriek the "Woodpecker, coming down from the top of the tree, and the Tortoise 
out of the water, consulted (together, saying) "What is to be done ? Then the "Wood- 
pecker, addressing the Tortoise (said). Friend, you have teeth, cut this trap ; I will 
go and manage (it so) that he shall not come ; thus by the efforts made by us our 
companion will obtain life; (and) explaining this matter (he) pronounced the first 
stanza : — 

1. " Therefore the leathern trap 

Cut with thy teeth, O Tortoise, 

I will manage (it) so 

That the Hunter shall not come." 

The Tortoise began to gnaw at the leather thongs. The Woodpecker went to the 
village where the Hunter dwelt. The Hunter at dawn, having taken (his) hunting knife, 

1 See Plate XXVI. ^ In Royal Asiatic Society's Journal, N. S., Vol. V. p. 10. 

K 2 


went out. The Bird perceiving that he was about to go out, sh'rieked aloud, shaking 
(his) wings, and struck him in the face when he was going out at the front door. The 
Hunter (said to himself), " I have been struck by a bird of bad omen," (and) so (saying) 
he returned, lay down a little (while), and then got up again and took (his) knife. The 
Bird (thought), " this (man) went out the first (time) by the front door, now he will go 
out by the back door," (and) seeing this he went and sat down at the back door. But 
the Hunter thought, " when I went out by the front door I saw a bird of bad omen, 
now I will go out at the back door," (and) so (thinking) he went out by the back door. 
The Bird again shrieking aloud went and struck (him) in the face. The Hunter, again 
struck by the bird of bad omen, (thought,) " this (bird) will not allow me to go out," 
(and) so returning he lay down until daybreak, and (then) at the dawn of morning took 
his knife and went out. The Bird went away hastily and told Bodhisatta that the 
Hunter was coming. At this moment, with exception of one thong, the other thongs 
had been cut by the Tortoise. But his teeth looked as if they were going to fall out, 
(and his) mouth was soiled with blood. Bodhisatta, seeing that the Hunter had taken 
(his) knife, and was coming on with the speed of lightning, burst that thong and entered 
the wood. The Bird (now) set himself on the top of a tree. But the Tortoise from 
weakness lay down there. The Hunter, after throwing the Tortoise into (his) bag, 
fastened (it) to a post. Bodhisatta, on (his) return, seeing (what had taken place) and 
knowing that the Tortoise had been caught, (thought,) " I will preserve (my) com- 
panion's life," (and) so, feigning to be weak, he appeared before the Hunter. He 
(thought), " this (deer) must be weak, I will kill him," (and) so, taking (his) knife, he 
followed (him). Bodhisatta, neither going very far (away) nor very near, entered the 
wood, taking him (with him). (But) when he knew that he had gone a great distance 
he changed his pace and went (back) with the rapidity of the wind another way, (and) 
when he had thrown up the bag into the air, with (his) horn, and let it fall and be torn 
on the ground, he drew out the Tortoise. The Woodpecker descended from the tree. 
(Then) Bodhisatta said admonishingly to the two (others) " I got life through you ; by 
" you has been done unto me what ought to be done to a companion ; now when the 
" Hunter comes he will seize you, therefore, friend Woodpecker ! take your children 
" and get to another (place), and you, friend Tortoise ! go into the water." They did 
so. The Master having become enlightened, pronounced the second stanza : — 
" The Tortoise went into the water. 
The Deer entered the wood. 
The Woodpecker from the top of the tree 
Carried (his) children far away." 

The Hunter coming (back) to that place, (and) not seeing anyone, took (his) torn 
sack and went to his house, seized with distress. 

The three companions, on the other hand, without breaking off (their mutual) 
confidence during life (at last) passed (away) according to (their) deeds. 

The Master having given this moral instruction wound up the Jataka thus : " At 
" that time the Hunter was Devadatta, the Woodpecker Sariputta, the Tortoise Moggallana, 
" but the Kurunga-deer (was) myself," The " Kurunga-Deer Birth." 


10. (Bull and Wolf.) 

The subject of this bas-relief is unknown to me, and Subhuti tells me that he is 
unable to identify it. There are only three actors in the scene, a humped Bull standing 
in a pond of water, and two Wolves, one of which is seated on the bank of the pond, 
while the other has been caught in a snare and is hanging by one of his hind legs from 
the top of a pole.^ I call the animals wolves and not tigers, as the one seated on the 
bank would seem to be afraid, of entering the water. Now this is a trait of a 
wolf, and not of a tiger, who takes to the water freely. In fact I have myself seen a 
tiger swim across the Irawadi River, and also three lions swim over the Sutlej on two 
different occasions. I think, therefore, that the snared animal as well as the other on the 
bank of the pool must be wolves. The shortness of their tails is also in favour of this 

The snare represented in the bas-relief is one well known in India, where it is used 
for catching any large beasts of prey including tigers. A description and sketch of one 
now used in Arakan will be found in the Journal of the Bengal Asiatic Society.^ 

11. Hansa JItaka. 

This sculpture is very much broken, the whole of the lower half and portions of both 
sides being lost. Enough, however, remains in the head and neck of a Goose (hansa) and 
in the head and outspread tail of a Peacock to identify the story, even without the 
accompanying label, as the Hansa Jdtalca, or " Goose Birth."^ The only version of the 
legend that I have been able to find is given by Upham, under the title of Nada Jdtalca. 
As his abstract is a short one, it may be quoted entire :* — " In this Jdtalca is related the 
" story of the royal Hansa, the king of the Birds, who assembled all his subjects in 
" an extensive^plain, in order that his daughter might choose a husband from amongst 
" them. She singled out the Peacock, who vain at the preference, immediately began to 
" dance, and spreading out his tail, displayed to the company those parts which ought 
" never to be exposed to view, at which indelicacy his Majesty was so much shocked 
" that he instantly broke off the match." 

12. KiNARA JItaka. 

This small bas-relief is unfortunately broken, so that the lower halves of the three 
figures are wanting; but there can be no doubt that the two standing figures are 
intended for Kinnaras, male and female, in accordance with the title of the Jataka. The 
Kinnara was a fabulous being, the upper half of whose body was human, and lower half 
that of a bird, and the big leaves or feathers which go round the bodies of the two 
standing figures, must have separated their human bodies from their bird legs.' 

In a list of the 550 Jatakas of Ceylon, kindly furnished to me by Subhuti, there is only 
one in which the name of Kinnara occurs. This is the Chandra Kinara Jdtalca, which 
agrees with the Bharhut bas-relief in limiting its actors to a Raja and a pair of Kinnaras, 
male and female. The following is a brief summary of the story made from Subhuti's 
translation of the Jataka : — 

1 See Plate XXVII. ^ gee Vol. IV. Plate IV. 3 See Plate XXVII. 

* Sacred and Historical Books of Cejlon, III. 289. 6 gee Plate XXVII. 


" In the days of yore when Brahmadatta was Raja of Benares, the great BodHsatta 
" was born as a Chandana Kinnara in the Him^la forest where he lived with his wife 
" Chandrika on the silver mountain. It happened that the Raja of Benares went out 
" deer shooting towards the Himala forest during the hot season when the Chandana 
" Kinnaras leave the Silver Mountain for the banks of a river. Then anointed with 
" Sandal wood (Chandana) and other perfumes and decked with garlands of flowers, 
" they danced on the bank of the stream, or bathed in its waters, or seated on beds of 
" flowers, they sang songs to the sound of the bambu flute. There danced the Kinnara 
" Queen accompanied by song, when the Raja of Benares attracted by the sweet voice 
" drew near and beheld the scene. Allured by her beauty the Raja thought to obtain 
" possession of her by killing her husband, whom he instantly shot with an arrow. The 
" Raja then tried to soothe the Queen by making her his chief wife, and the head of 
" sixteen thousand women. But the Queen fled to the Silver Mountain cursing the 
" Raja. ' cruel Raja, who hast slain iny husband, the pain and sorrow which thou hast 
" ' caused me shall be the lot of thy wife. Thy mother shall become mad, frequenting 
" ' graveyards, and thy daughter shall be childless.' 

" "When the Raja had gone, the Queen descended the Silver Mountain towards the 
" body of her husband. Then carrying the corpse to the top of the hill she placed the 
" head on her lap and invoked the Devas to restore her husband to life. The appeal was 
" heard by Indra, who, descending to the earth in the form of an old Brahman, raised the 
" dead Kinnara king to life. The loving couple then retired to the Silver Mountain, and 
" lived happily ever afterwards." 

If this is the same story as is represented in the Bharhut bas-relief, then the sculp- 
tured version differs from the Pali legend of Ceylon in making the pair of Kinnaras dance 
before the Raja of Benares while he is seated on a chair or throne. 

13. AsADKisA JItaka. 

This sculpture is unfortunately much broken, and any inscription which it may have 
had is lost ; but the story of Prince Asadrisa, the great Archer, is too clearly told to 
leave any doubt as to its identification.^ This Jataka is one of those given by Spence 
Hardy, from whose work the following translation is extracted : — ^ 

" In this birth, Bodhisat was the son of Brahmadatta, king of Benares, and was 
" called Asadrisa. He had a younger brother, Brahmadatta. On arriving at a proper 
" age, he received all necessary instructions from a learned preceptor ; and the king at 
" his death commanded that the kingdom should be given to Asadrisa, and the vazirship 
" to his brother. The nobles were williug that the royal command should be obeyed ; 
" but as Bodhisat positively refused the kingdom, it was given to his younger brother, 
" and he became vazir, or inferior king. A certain noble afterwards insinuated to the 
" king that Asadrisa was plotting against his life ; on hearing which he became enraged, 
" and commanded that the traitor should be apprehended. But Bodhisat received 
" warning of the danger in which he was placed, and fled to the City of Samaya. On 
" arriving at the gate of the city, he sent to inform the king that a famous archer had 
" arrived in his dominions. The king gave orders that he should be admitted into the 
" royal presence, and asked what wages he would require ; and when he was answered 
" that a thousand masv/rans would be a reasonable salary, he gave his promise that this 

See Plate XXVII. 2 Manual of Buddhism, p. 114. 


" sum should be allowed. The king's former archers were naturally envious that a mere 
" stranger should receive an allowance so much superior to their own. One day the king 
" having entered the royal garden, commanded that a couch should be placed, and a 
" cloth spread, at the foot of a mango tree. When seated, he espied a mango fruit at 

" the very uppermost part of the tree ; and as it was impossible that any one could get 

" it by climbing, he intimated that the archers should be called, who were to bring it 

" down by an arrow. The archers of course gave way to the man of the thousand 

" maswrans; and the king repeated his command to Asadrisa, who requested that the 
" royal couch might be removed from under the tree. The archers perceiving that the 

" Bodhisat had neither bow nor arrow in his hand, resolved among themselves, that if 

" he were to request their assistance, they would refuse him the use of their weapons. 

" Bodhisat then laid aside his usual garment, arrayed himself in a splendid robe, girt his 

" sword by his side, and his quiver upon his shoulder ; and putting together a bow that 

" was made of separate pieces, jointed, with a coral necklace as the bow-string, he 

" approached the king, and inquired whether the fruit was to be felled by the arrow 

" as it went up or as it returned. The king replied that it would be the greater 

" wonder if the fruit were brought down by the returning arrow. Bodhisat gave notice 

" that as the arrow would proceed right into the firmament, it would be necessary to 

" wait for its return with a little patience. An arrow was then shot, which cleft a small 

" portion from the mango, then went to the other world, and was seized by the Devas. 

" Another arrow was shot, and after some time, therb was a noise in the air, thrum, 

" thrum, thrum, at which the people were afraid. Bodhisat told them it was the sound 

" of the arrow ; and they were then more fearful, as each one thought it might fall 

" upon his own body. The arrow, as it returned, divided the mango from the tree ; and 

" Bodhisat going to the place, caught the fruit in one hand and the arrow in the other. 

" At the sight of this, the people a thousand times shouted in triumph, a thousand 

" times clapped their hands, and a thousand times waved their kerchiefs round their 

" heads and danced ; and the king gave Asadrisa countless treasures. 

" At this time seven kings, having heard that Asadrisa was dead, surrounded the 

" City of Benares, and gave the king his choice, either to fight or to deliver up his 

" kingdom. Brahmadatta sighed for the assistance of his brother, and having received 

" information of his place of retreat, sent a noble to invite him to return. Asadrisa at 

" once took leave of Samaya, and on arriving near Benares, he ascended a scaffold, from 

" which he shot an arrow, with an epistle attached to the following effect : ' This is the 

" ' first arrow from the hand of Asadrisa ; if the second should be sent, you will all be 

" ' slain.' The arrow fell upon a dish from which the seven kings were eating rice, and 

" as they thought within themselves that the threat would certainly be accomplished, 

" they fled to their own cities. Thus Bodhisat conquered the seven kings, without the 

" shedding of a single drop of blood. Brahmadatta now offered to resign the kingdom, 

" but Bodhisat again refused it, and going to the forest of Himala, by strict asceticism, 

" he gained supernatural power, and afterwards passed away to the highest of the 

" celestial regions." 

14. Dasakatha JItaka.. 
This scene has also lost its label from a break in the stone, but the story is so 
distinctly indicated by the figures and accessories as to be recognizable at the first 
glance. As the Buddhist story of Dasaratha differs in several particulars from the 


Brahmamcal version, I venture to give it in full from the translation of Mr. FausboU.^ 
The bas-relief illustrates the interview between Hama and his brother Bharata, when the 
former refuses to return, and gives his straw shoes to Bharata, telling him, "Well then, 
until my return these shoes shall reign." ^ 

" In times past there lived in Baranasi a great king, Dasaratha by name, (who) after 
" abandoning a reckless life reigned with justice. His queen (who was) the head wife 
" of 16,000 women bore (unto him) two sons and one daughter. The elder son was the 
" sage Eama by name, the second the Prince Lakkhana, the daughter the Princess Sita 
" by name. Afterwards the queen died. The king, when she was dead, after having 
" for a long time given way to the sway of sorrow (was at length) brought to reason by 
" (his) ministers, (and) when he had performed the necessary funeral ceremonies he set 
" another in the place of queen. She became dear (and) pleasing to the king. She 
" afterwards having conceived, and having gone through the ceremonies (on occasion) 
" of her conception, bore a son. They named him Prince Bharata. Prom love to (this) 
" son the king said, ' (My) dear, I grant thee a boon, accept it.' She having accepted 
" (it but) leaving it in abeyance (for a while), at the time, when the prince was (about) 
" seven (or) eight years (old) went to the king and said, ' Lord, a boon was conferred 
" ' by you upon my son ; now grant it him.' ' Take (it my) dear.' ' Lord, give the 
" ' kingdom to my son.' The king snapping his fingers (angrily at her) reprimanded 
" her (saying), ' Wretched outcast, my two sons shine like masses of fire, thou askest 
" ' (me to give) the kingdom to thy son after having put them both to death.' She 
" (was at first) terrified (and) entered the inner apartment, (but) on subsequent days 
" she again and again asked the king for the kingdom. The king, however, not granting 
" her the boon, thought, ' Women as (well) known, are ungrateful (and) treacherous ; 
" ' this one, either by writing false letters or by resorting to mean bribery, wiU have my 
•' ' sons killed," (and) so having summoned (his) sons (and) told them the matter (he 
" said), ' (My) dears, if you (continue to) live here, there may be obstacles (in your 
" ' way), go (therefore) to a neighbouring kingdom, or to the forest; come back at the 
" ' time of my funeral pyre and seize upon the paternal kingdom,' (and) so having said, 
" after again calling the astrologer's and asking (them) the limit of his life, and hearing 
" that another 12 years would pass (before his death), he said, ' (My) dears, after the 
" ' lapse of 12 years (hence) return and raise the (royal) umbrella.' They said, ' Well ;' 
" bowed to (their) father, and descended from the palace weeping. The Princess Sita 
" (saying), ' I too will go away with my dear brothers,' bowed to her father and went 
" out weeping. These three having gone out surrounded by a multitude (of people), 
" and having, after sending back the multitude, gradually entered the Himavanta, built 
" a hermitage in a region abounding with water (and) where various kinds of fruits 
" were easily to be had, and resided (there) subsisting on fruits. The sage Lakkhana, 
" however, and Sita demanding of the sage Rama (said), ' You stand in our father's 
" ' place, therefore do you stay at the hermitage, we will bring fruits and nourish you,' 
" and so they took (his) promise. Prom that (moment) the sage Rama remains there. 
" The others brought fruits and watched over him. (While) they were residing (there), 
" living on fruits, the great Dasaratha ended his days from sorrow for his sons in the 
«' ninth year (after their departure). Having finished the funeral rites over him the 
" Queen said, 'Raise the umbrella for my son, Prince Bharata.' But the ministers 

1 Dasaratha J^taka, p. 13. ^ ggg piate XXVII. 


" (said) : ' the masters of the umbrella live in the forest/ (and) so (they) did not allow 
" it. The Prince Bharata (saying to himself) : ' I will bring my brother the sage Eama 
" ' from the forest and raise the umbrella (for him),' took the five royal insignia, reached 
" -with a fourfold army his dwelling-place, and after halting the army at a short distance 
" entered the hermitage with a few attendants at a time, when the sage Lakkhana and 
" Sita had gone to the forest. Having approached the sage Eama, who was sitting at 
" ease and without desires at the door of the hermitage like a fixed golden statue, and 
" having bowed (to him) and, while standing apart, told the tidings of the king's (death), 
»" he fell down at (his) feet, together with the attendants, and wept. The sage Rama 
" neither grieved nor wept, there was not even the slightest commotion of his senses. 
" While Bharata was thus sitting weeping, the other two at the evening time came 
" back bringing (with them) various kinds of fruits. (Then) the sage Rama thought : 
" ' These are young, they have no discriminative understanding, as I have ; if on a 
" ' sudden they are told, " Your father is dead," they will not be able to bear the 
" ' sorrow, (but) their hearts will break ; by some means I will get them to go down 
" ' into the water, and (then) I will tell (them) these tidings.' Then showing them a 
" pool in front of them (he said) : ' At length you have come, this be your punishment,. 
" ' go down into this water and stay (there,' and) so (having said) he at the same time 
" pronounced the first half stanza : — 

"la. Come Lakkhana and Sita 
" both go down into the water. 
" They, at (his) mere call, went down and stayed (there). Then telling them those 
" tidings, he pronounced the (other) half stanza : — 

" lb. Thus says this Bharata: 
" ' The king Dasaratha is dead.' 
" Hearing the tidings of (their) father's death they became insensible. He again 
" told them, (and) they again became insensible. Thus for the third time having 
" become insensible, the attendants raised them up, took (them) out of the water and 
" comforted (them). They all sat mutually crying and lamenting. Then Prince Bharata 
" thought : ' My brother Prince Lakkhana and (my sister Princess Sita, having heard 
" ' the tidings of (their) father's death, are not able to restrain their sorrow, but the sage 
" ' Rama mourns not (and) laments not, what can be the reason of his not mourning ? I 
" ' will ask him,' (and) so asking him he pronounced the second stanza : — 
" 2. 'By what strength (of mind,) Rama, 

" ' dost thou not mourn what is to be mourned ? 
" ' having heard (that thy) father (is) dead 
" ' pain does not overwhelm thee.' 
" Then the sage Ram-a, telling him the reason of his not mourning, (said) ; — 
" ' What cannot be preserved 
" ' by man, even if much bewailed 
" ' for such a thing's sake why should the 
" 'intelligent (and) wise (man) distress himself?'" 
(Eere follow nine other stanzas.) 

" Thus by these stanzas be elucidated the uncertainty (of all things). The assembly 
" having heard this religious discourse of the sage Rama, elucidating the uncertainty 
" (of all things) became free from sorrow. Then Prince Bharata l^owing to the sage 

H 255. I, 


" Rama, said : ' Accept the kingdom of Bar^nasi ' ' (My) dear, take Lakkhana and tte 
" ' Princess Slta and go and rule the kingdom.' ' But you, Lord 1 ' ' (My) dear, my 
" ' father said to me, " After the lapse of twelve years then come and rule," if I go now I 
" ' shall not fulfil his words, but having passed three years more (here) I will come,' 
" ' "Who shall reign during that time ? ' 'Do you reign ? ' ' "We shall not.' * Well then, 
" ' until my return these shoes shall reign,' so (saying) he took off his straw shoes 
" and gave (them) to (Bharata). Those three persons, having taken the shoes and 
" bowed to the sage Eama, went to Baranasi, surrounded by a multitude (of people). 
" For three years the shoes reigned. The ministers, after placing the straw-shoes on' 
" the royal couch, consider the case ; if it be badly considered the shoes strike against 
" each other. (Taking warning) by this sign they again consider (the case). At the 
" time when the case is duly considered, the shoes sit together noiselessly. The sage 
" Rama at the end of three years went out of the forest, and on reaching the city of 
" Baranasi entered the Park. Having learned his arrival, the princes, surrounded by 
" ministers, went to the Park, and after making Sita queen, they anointed them both. 
" Thus having received the (royal) unction, Mahasatta standing on a chariot, entered the 
" city with a large retinue, and after a reverential salutation having ascended the upper 
" story of the magnificent palace Suchandaka, he from that time reigned with justice 
" during 16,000 years, and (then) went to heaven. 

" During ten thousand years 

" and sixty centuries 

" the fine-necked and great-armed 

" Rama reigned." 
" This stanza by him who possessed universal knowledge illustrates the matter." 
In the Brahmanical account of this scene, the interview with Bharata takes place at 
the mountain of Chitrakuta, to which Rama and Sita had retired after his father's 
declaration that he had given the throne of Ayodhya to his younger brother Bharata. 
The latter refused the throne, and followed his brother to Chitrakuta, and urged him to 
return to Ayodhya. This R4ma persistently refused. " Bharata then took a pair of 
" new shoes, adorned with gold, and turned to his brother Rama and said : — ' Put on 
" ' these shoes, I pray you, and they shall furnish the means of securing the good of all.' 
" The heroic Rama then put on the shoes, and returned them to the magnanimous 
" Bharata. And Bharata bowed to the shoes, and said to Rama : ' R4ma, I will for 
" ' fourteen years assume the matted hair — and the habit of a devotee, and subsist on 
" ' fruits and roots— waiting your return, I will commit the management of the Raj to 
" ' your shoes, and reside without the city ; and unless you return to Ayodhya within five 
" ' days of the completion of the fourteenth year, I will enter the fire.' "^ 

This is the scene which is believed to be represented in the sculpture,^ where we 
see Bharata standing in front of R4ma and Sita, and holding in his right hand an 
umbrella and a pair of shoes. In his left hand he holds a pole which rests on his 
shoulder. Something which was attached to the pole has been lost by the breaking of 
the sculpture. In mid-front is a dog, which apparently belongs to Rama, as it sits at his 
feet facing Bharata. 

See Wheeler's Eamayana. 2 See Plate XXVIL 


On his return to Ayodhya, Bharata said to Ms assembled subjects, " Bring hither 
" the state Umbrella ! By these shoes of my elder brother is justice established in the 
" E^j." The umbrella was therefore an essential part of the installation of the shoes, as 
shown in the bas-relief. The story ends with a description of the usual transaction of 
business under the new rule of Eama's shoes : " Himself (Bharata) holding the royal 
" umbrella over the shoes, while the Chcmara (or Ohcmri) was taken by Satrughna, and 
" all the affairs of the government were transacted under the authority of the shoes. 
" The fortunate Bharata installed with the shoes of his elder brother, and paying 
" homage to them, thus governed the Eaj. All the presents that were brought, and all 
" the business of state which occurred he first laid before the shoes, and afterward^ did 
" as occasion required." 

15. Isi-MiGO JAtaka. 

The small scene labelled as the Isi-migo Jdtaka or " Eishi-deer Birth," is represented 
in one of the panels of the coping.^ It contains two figures, one a man, apparently a 
royal huntsman by his costume, and deer, with a tree in the background. The whole 
scene I believe is intended to represent the famous meeting between the Eaja of Benares 
and the King of the Deer (Buddha in a former birth) in the Deer-park (Mrigadiva) at 
Isi-pattana. The name of Isi-migo I take to be an abbreviation of Isi-pattcma-migo or 
BisM-pattana-migo.^ The legend, which is told at length by Hwen Thsang, is briefly as 
follows :^ — In a previous existence when Buddha was King of the Deer, the Eaja of 
Benares was a zealous hunter, and caused great loss amongst the Deer as much by 
setting fire to the grass as by his arrows. One day therefore the King of the Deer boldly 
advanced towards the Eaja, and proposed that he should give up hunting, in return for 
which he should receive one Deer daily. The Eaja agreed to the proposal. This is the 
scene which I suppose to be represented in the Bharhut sculpture. In the more 
interesting sequel of the legend, the subsequent interview between the Eaja and the King 
of the Deer takes place in the palace, and as no building is represented in the bas-relief 
I conclude that the subject of the sculpture is the first interview in the Mrigadma, or 

16. UdA JlfAKA. 

The actors in this scene are a holy Eishi with a pair of dogs and a pair of cats.j 
The simple title of TJda Mtaka does not occur in the long list of the 550 Jatakas of 
Ceylon ; but there is an Udasa JdtaJca or Udachani Jdtaka, and an JJddala Jdtaha, one of 
which may possibly be the subject of the Bharhut sculpture. The Eishi is seated on the 
ground with his water bowl and a basket of food near him. Before him is a pool of 
water stocked with fish. On the bank a pair of cats are quarrelling over the head and 
tail of a fish, and beyond them are two dogs, one trotting joyfully off with a bone, and 
the other sitting down disappointed, with his back turned to his luckier rival. 

This story ought to be identified at once by any one possessing a complete copy of 
the 550 Jatakas. The title of Uda JdtaJca means simply the " Water-birth," but I suspect 
that the name has been unintentionally shortened by the sculptor. 

1 See Plate XLIII. fig. 2. 2 go Jq another J&taka we have Kurunga Miga for a Kurunga Deer, 

6 JuUen's Hwen Thsang, 11. 361. * See Plate XLVI. flg. 2. 

L 2 



The name of this Jdtalca is not found among the 550 previous births of Buddha 
preserved in the Pali books of Ceylon. The actors are two men and two monkey-s. One 
of the monkeys standing in a tree is being addressed by one of the men who carries a 
pair of water vessels on a pole.^ The other monkey is standing on the ground and 
receiving in his hands a drink of water poured from a vessel by the other man. Both of 
the men's right shoulders are bare, and their heads unshaved, from which it may be 
concluded that they are monks. 

18. SujIto Gahuto JItaka. 

The following account of this Jataka is taken entire from Spence Hardy's abstract :^ — 
" It came to pass that whilst ..Grotama Buddha resided in the Vihara called Jetavana, 
" near the city of Sewet, he related the following Jataka, an account of an ascetic who 
" had lost his father. In what way ? Buddha having perceived that an ascetic who had 
" lost his father endured great affliction in consequence, and knowing by what means he 
" could point out the way of relief, took with him a large retinue of priests, and 
" proceeded to the dwelling of the ascetic. Being honorably seated, he inquired, 
" ' "Why are you thus sorrowful, ascetic 1 ' To which the bereaved son replied, ' I am 
" ' thus sorrowful on account of the death of my father.' On hearing this Buddha said, 
" ' It is to no purpose to weep for the thing that is past and gone.' In what manner? 
" That which follows is the relation. In a former age, when Brahmadatta was King of 
" Benares, Bodhisat was born of a wealthy family, and was called Sujata. The 
" grandfather of Sujata sickened and died, at which his father was exceedingly 
" sorrowful; indeed his sorrow was so great, that he removed the bones from their 
" burial-place, and deposited them in a place covered with earth near his own house, 
" whither he went thrice a day to weep. The sorrow almost overcome him ; he ate not, 
" neither did he drink. Bodhisat thought within himself that it was proper to attempt 
" the assuaging of his father's grief ; and therefore, going to the spot where there was 
" a dead buffalo, he put grass and water to its mouth, and cried out, ' Oh Buffalo, eat 
" ' and drink ! ' The people perceived his folly and said, ' What is this, Sujata ? Can a 
" ' dead buffalo eat grass or drink water ? ' But without paying any attention to their 
" interference, he still cried out, ' Oh Buffalo, eat and drink ! ' The people concluded 
" that he was out of his mind and went to inform his father ; who forgetting his parent 
" from his affection for his son, went to the place where he was, and inquired the reason 
" of his conduct. Sujata replied, ' There are the feet and tail, and all the interior parts 
" ' of the buffalo, entire ; if it be foolish in me to give grass and water to a buffalo dead, 
" ' but not decayed, why do you, father, weep for my grandfather, when there is no part 
" ' of him whatever to be seen 1 ' The father then said, ' True my son, what you say is like 
" 'the throwing of a vessel of water upon fire ; it has extinguished my sorrow ! ' and 
" thus saying he returned many thanks to Sujata." 

" I Buddha am the person who was then born as the youth Sujata." 
I have quoted the account of this Jataka at length because it shows very clearly the 
way in which Buddha introduced these stories of his previous births into his common 

1 Plate XLVI. fig. 8, '^ Manual of Buddhism, pp. 107, 108. 


discourse. In the present legend the only difference between the Ceylonese version and 
the sculptured representation is in the substitution of a buffalo for the humped bull of 
the bas-relief,^ In the sculpture a young man is represented offering food to a dead bull, 
while a more elderly person is standing by looking on. The bas-relief occupies one of 
the small panels of a coping stone— and is duly labelled above : 

Sujdto-GaJiuto JdtaJca, 
which I interpret doubtfully ; " Birth as Sujata the BuU-inviter " — by taking gahuto as a 
compound word, niade up of go or gav a bull, and huto, from the root hwe to " call, invite, 
or summons." This title of Sujata is fully borne out by the Singhalese version of the 
legend in which he repeatedly summons or " invites " the dead animal by calling out 
" Buffalo, eat and drink." 

19. BiDALA JItaka, or Kukuta JItaka. 

The subject of this bas-relief is the well-known fable of the Cat and the Cock, which 
is here doubly labelled as the Biddla Jdtalca, or " Cat-birth," and the Kukuta JdtaJca, or 
" Cock-birth." The general scope of the story is sufficiently clear from the sculpture 
which represents a Cat looking up at a Cock seated in a tree.^ For the following account 
of the legend I am again indebted to the friendly aid of Subhuti : — 

" "Whilst the most kind Lord Buddha was residing in the monastery of Jetavana 
" this Jataka was recited by him an account of a monk who had fallen deeply in love 
" with a certain woman, "When he was taken before Buddha, and questioned as to his 
" being in love with a woman, he answered in the affirmative. Then Buddha said, ' 
" ' priest it is a fault to be in love with a woman. By their fascinations women conquer 
" ' men, and cause them misery. It is like the endeavour of a Cat to ensnare a Cock ; in 
" illustration of which he related a story of one of his previous births, 

" In days long past when Brahmadatta reigned in Benares, Bodhisatta was a cock 
" living in the forest with a large brood of fowls. At the same time a she-Cat was living 
" close by who had already eaten many of the fowls, and was now intent on getting hold 
" of Bodhisatta himself. It struck her that the readiest way of seizing the Cock was to 
" offer herself as his wife. So she went towards the, village near which the fowls lived 
" and tried to persuade Bodhisatta to take her as his wife, saying, ' king of fowls, with 
" ' strong wings and red comb, I wish to become your wife.' But the Cock suspecting 
," treachery replied, ' "We are birds and you are a quadruped; every one should take a 
" ' wife from his own kind.' Then the Cat rejoined, ' You must not say so. I will serve 
," ' only you, and if you still doubt me let the contract be made before all the people of 
" ' Benares," But Bodhisatta said, ' Your wish is not to serve us, but to get hold of my 
" ' fowls and myself.' Then addressing the priest, Buddha said, ' priest, had that Cock 
" ' fallen in love with and lived with her, his death would have followed. In like manner 
" ' if a man falls into the hands of a woman his life will be in danger. But if he escapes 
" ' the fascination of woman, like the Cock who got rid of the Puss, his fate will be 
" ' happy. At that time I Bodhisatta was the Cock.' " 

Under the tree in which the Cock is sitting the sculptor has placed the ornamental 
bunch of small beUs worn by dancing girls. I notice this point, as it seems probable 

See Plate XLVII. fig. 3. ^ gee Plate XLVH. fig. 5, and Plate LIII. inscription 6, copings. 



that the artist may have placed it there intentionally to indicate the -watchfulness of 

the Cock. 

The story of the Cock and the Cat is similar to -3iSop's Fable of the Dog, the Cock, 

and the Fox, which, as it is short, may here be quoted in full : — ''■ 

" A Dog and a Cock having struck up an acquaintance went out on their travels 
together. Nightfall found them in a forest ; so the Cock flying up on a tree perched 
among the branches, while the Dog dozed below at the foot. As the night passed 
away and the day dawned, the Cock, according to his custom, set up a shrill 
crowing. A Fox hearing him, and thinking to make a meal of him, came and stood 
under the tree and thus addressed him : ' Thou art a good little bird, and most useful 
' to thy fellow creatures. Come down, then, that we may sing our matins and rejoice 
' together.' The Cock replied, ' Gro, my good friend, to the foot of the tree, and caU 
' the sacristan to toll the bell.' But as the Fox went to call him, the Dog jumped out 
in a moment and seized the Fox and made an end of him." 


Magha Deva was an ancient Eaja who reigned in the city of Miyulu. He was the 
first mortal whose hair turned grey. This did not happen until he had reigned 252,000 
years, and although he had 84,000 years still to live, he Was so penetrated with the 
instability of human existence that he resigned his kingdom to his son, and became an 
ascetic in a forest which afterwards bore his name.^ Spence Hardy adds that " there 
" were 84,000 princes of this race, all of whom when they saw the first grey hair, 
" resigned the kingdom and became ascetics." In the Mahawanso and other Pali books 
his name is written MaJchadewa; but the story shows that he is the same person as the 
Magha Deva of the Bharhut Sculptures.'* 

The bas-relief containing this legend is one of the small panels of a coping stone.* 
The story is well told, but the subject is a difficult one for sculpture, which cannot well 
represent grey hair. The Eaja is seated between two attendants, with his left hand 
resting on his knees and his right hand raised before his face, holding something small 
between his forefinger and thumb. The attendant on his right is leaning forward, and 
apparently drawing the Eaja's attention to a similar object, which he also holds up 
between the forefinger and thumb of his right hand. In the sculpture itself I could not 
perceive what the object was. That it was something exceedingly small was quite clear, 
and I was inclined to think, from the king's pensive appearance, that it must be a piU 
and that the attendant already noticed was the physician holding up another pill. 
Mr. Beglar also thought that this figure was a physician, whose action seemed to be that 
of feeling the finger of the Eaja. The two hands, however, do not touch, although they are 
placed very close together, and may perhaps be holding the same grey hair. The third 
person is merely an attendant, who stands to the left of the king, with his hands joined 
upon his breast in an attitude of respect. When once the name of the subject is known, 
the spirit of the scene is evident, and the story is perhaps as well told as such a subject 

1 ^sop's Fables, by James, Fable 32, p. 22. 

2 Hardy, Manual of Buddhism, pp. 129, 130, 134. 

3 Tournour's Mahawanso, pp. 8, 9 ; and Upham's Sacred and Historical Books of Ceylon, III. 283. 

4 See Plate XLVH. flg. 2. 


could be in sculpture. Fortunately the artist has inscribed the title of the scene at the 
top of his work as 

Magha Bemya Jdtakam, 
that is the " Magha Deva birth " of Buddha or his previous existence as King Magha 

21. Bhisa Haranita JItaka. 

The name of this Jataka is not found amongst the 550 J4takas of Ceylon, and I feel 
doubtful as to its meaning. There are five actors in the scene, a Rishi, or male ascetic, a 
female ascetic, a layman, an elephant, and a monkey. The Rishi and the monkey are 
both seated and are both speaking. The female ascetic, whose right shoulder is bare, 
is addressing the Rishi, and the layman is making an offering of a bundle of lotus stalks. 
Behind the Rishi is his hut,^ It seems probable that the presentation of the lotus stalks 
has been the origin of the title of the Jataka, as bJiisa is one of the names for the 
lotus, ■while hwrmya means either bringing, or seizing, or stealing. The meaning of the 
name may therefore be simply the " Lotus offering Jataka." 


Amongst the 550 Jdtakas preserved in Ceylon there is one called the VidJmra Jataka, 
which is thus alluded to in the Dathavansa :^ — " Who, as Vidhura by name, possessed of 
" a keen intellect, subdued, on the summit of K^lagiri, the devil Punnaka, a cruel foe, 
" endowed with great supernatural powers, and addicted to sensuous appetites." Judging 
from the rocky background of the middle bas-relief of the comer pillar of the North Grate, 
the scene may be supposed to represent the summit of Mount Kalagiri, while the figure 
suspended by his heels must be the " Devil Pmmalca."^ The inscription engraved imme- 
diately below this scene reads Vitwa PimaMya Jdtaham, which must refer also to the 
scene below, in which the principal figure and his horse re-appear. I presume that the 
name of the principal actor should be VidMra "the wise," as he is described in the 
Dathavansa above quoted as " possessed of a keen intellect." 

Owing to the difference in the spelling of the names the subject of the Vitura Jataka 
was not recognised either by Professor Childers or by my learned friend SubhAti. But 
as soon as I saw the above-quoted verse of the Dathavansa in which the two actors are 
Vidhwa and PwrmaM, I at once recognised the Vitwa PimaJcaya JdtaTca of the Bharhut 
Sculptures. On referring Subhuti to this verse of the Dathavansa, he kindly furnished 
me with the following translation of the Vidhura Jdtaka, which with some few alterations 
is given in his own words : — 

" One day while the supreme Buddha was residing at the Monastery of Jetavana, 
" near the city of S&vathi, and his disciples were assembled together at the Lecture 
" Hall, conversing about the extraordinary wisdom of their Teacher, it happened that 
" Buddha himself arrived there and inquired of them, ' Disciples, on what subject have 
" ' you been conversing ? ' They answered, ' My Lord, it was on your Lordship's 
" ' wisdom.' And he rejoined, ' Disciples, it is not only now that I am wise, but in 

1 See Plate XLVHI. fig. 7. 

2 Dathavansa by Muta Coomara Swamy, p. 51. 

3 See Plate XVin., middle bas-reUef. 


" ' former births also I acted witli wisdom ;' and then to demonstrate the veracity of 
" this assertion he related the Vidhura JdtaJca as follows : — 

" In former times there reigned a king named Dhanajaya Korava, in the city of 
" Indapatta in the country of Kuru. He had a minister named Yidhura Pandit who 
" advised him on all matters. This Pandit was famed for his wisdom, and won the 
" hearts of all the kings of Dambadiva (ancient India) and many of their subjects, by his 
" lectures on the Eighteous Law (Sudharma). 

" At that time four men of the city of KMachampa in the country of Anga having 
" each supported an ascetic obtained by the efficacy of that religious entertainment 
" rewards such as each desired. One of them was bom as the son of Dhananjaya Korava, 
" the second became Indra, King of the Grods, the third was King of the Naga world, 
" and the last was G-aruda, King of the Garuda world. The first born as the son of 
" Dhananjaya the Korava king, succeeded his father on the throne. Afterwards all 
" four happening to come to a certain grove for the purpose of performing 8ila (or 
" religious observances), accidentally met each other. Then there arose among them a 
" controversy which they referred to Vidhura Pandit, who having admonished them, 
" decided their contention to the entire satisfaction of all the four, and they were so 
" pleased with his decision of their controversy that each of them gave him a valuable 
" present, that of the Naga king being his throat gem. 

" When the Naga king had returned to the Naga world, his wife Queen Yimala, 
" missing the famous gem, inquired of him about it. Then he related to her all the 
" extraordinary virtues of the Pandit and about his wonderful preaching, and told her 
" that he was so satisfied with his counsel that he had presented the gem to the Pandit. 
" This created a great desire in the mind of Queen Vimala to see the Pandit and to hear 
" his preaching. To accomplish this object she pretended to be sick, and told the Naga 
" king that she would not live unless she should get the heart of Vidhura Pandit. The 
" king, being very fond of her, was willing to meet her wishes, but as he could not think 
" of any means of carrying out his purpose, he became very sorrowful. Then his 
" daughter, the Naga maideti named Irandati, approached her father and inquired of 
" him why he was so dejected. The king replied, ' My daughter, if you wish that your 
" ' mother should live, you should seek for a lover who is able to bring to her the 
" ' heart of the Pandit Vidhura.' His daughter consoled him by saying, ' You need 
"■ ' not grieve any more about this.' 

" Then she adorned her person most beautifully and repaired to the Kalagiri moun- 
" tain in the Himalaya range, and began to play most sweetly on a musical instrument 
" for the purpose of attracting a lover who should be able to accomplish her object. 
" Then Pumaka Yaksha, an officer of the Yaksha armies, and a nephew of Vaisravana, 
" King of the Yakshas, having seen the Naga maiden, fell in love with her, and, having 
" learned her object, went with her to wait upon her father. Then the Naga king 
" promised that if he would bring the Pandit Vidhura into the Naga world, the N4ga 
" maiden should be given to him in marriage. 

" Then Purnaka mounted his aerial horse of the Savindhava race, and Went straight 
" to the VipuUa rock from whence he took a wonderful and valuable gem, thinking to 
" gamble with Dhananjaya, the Korava king, who was very fond of play, so that he 
" might defeat the king and win from him the Pandit to carry back to the Naga world. 
" He then proceeded direct to the citj^ of Ipdrapatta in the county of Kuru. There he 


" took the form of a man, and having showed the wonderful gem to the Korava king 
" he induced him to gamble with him, so that he won from him the Pandit Vidhura. 
" When Purnaka Yaksha announced that he intended to take the Pandit away with him, 
" the king and all the people of the country became very sorrowful and were very loth 
" to part with him. Purnaka however took no notice of this unwillingness, but referred 
" the matter to the Pandit himself, who decided in favour of Purnaka Yaksha. As the 
" Pandita said this the king was silent; but when Purnaka was preparing to take 
" Vidhura away he begged that the Pandit might be spared for three days for the pur- 
" pose of advising his family as well as the king himself and the people of the country. 
" "When this was done the Pandit made himself ready for the journey, and Purnaka said 
" to him, " As this horse travels ' through the air, you must hold fast by his tail and 
" ' be carried along hanging behind him.' So the Pandit took hold of the horse's tail 
" and hung on by it. Now Purnaka himself sate upon the horse, and rode through the 
" air intending to kill -the Pandit by banging him against the rocks and trees in the 
" Himalaya forest. But he escaped quite uninjured owing to the influence of his merits 
" and to his great wisdom. So when Purnaka saw this he carried him to the top of the 
" mountain peak called Kdlagiri, and there seizing the Pandit by -the feet he dashed him 
" on the rocks. But as the Pandit still remained uninjured the Yaksha thought to seize 
" him again and to hurl him head foremost from the summit of the mountain. But the 
" Pandit perceiving what he was about, suddenly asked Purnaka, without shewing any 
" symptoms of fear, what was the object which he wished to accomplish ; then Purnaka 
" related to him the whole matter. But the Pandit knew that although the Yaksha was 
" told to kiU him and to carry his heart to the !N"%a Queen Yimala, yet that was not 
" her real object, which was simply to hear his discourse. He therefore decided that he 
" would first instruct Purnaka Yaksha, and then each of them would be able to 
" accomplish his respective object. So he thus addressed Purnaka : ' Yaksha, I know a 
" ' very good science called Sudharmcu ; do thou in the first place hear of that science 
" ' from me, and after that kill me and take my heart to the Queen.' Then the Yaksha, 
" being curious to hear this science of the Pandit, placed him upon his feet on the top of 
" the mountain and listened to his discourse, with which he was so pleased that he 
" proposed to take him back to the city of Indrapatta. But the Pandit persuaded the 
" Yaksha to carry him to the Naga world, where he preached the law (of Buddha) to 
" the Queen Vimala and to the Naga king. They were so pleased with his teaching that 
" they gave their daughter Irandati in marriage to Purnaka Yaksha ; and then Purnaka 
" presented his wonderful gem to the Pandit, and carried him back to the city of 
" Indrapatta in the country of Kuru." 

" Thus the Supreme Buddha preached this Jataka, and pointing to himself, said, 
" ' That Vidhura Pandit was myself.' " 

On turning to the photographs of the Bharhut Pillar on which this Jataka is 
sculptured, I found that several of the scenes of the legend were represented in a very 
clear and unmistakeable manner. The Pillar is unfortunately much broken, but the only 
scene which has suffered any serious loss is that forming the lower compartment, of which 
about one third has been altogether lost.^ The following are the particular scenes of the 
Vidhura Jataka which I have been able to identify. 

1 See Plate XYHI. figs. A, B, and C; 
H 255. M 


Uppermost scene, marked A. 1. in the Plate. — Here two figures, a male and a female, 
are represented standing amidst rocks. These I take to be the Yaksha Pumaka listening 
to the music of the N^ga maiden Irandati on the top of the Kalagiri mountain. The 
head of a Bear is seen peeping out of a cave in the rocks. 

Second scene, marked A. 2. — In this bas-relief two male figures are represented 
standing before the King and Queen of the Nagas, who are both seated. The king is 
known by his five-headed snake canopy, while the queen has only one snake over her 
head. The principal standing figure, who has his hands crossed over his breast in an 
attitude of respect, I take to be the Yaksha Pumaka who has come to ask the snake 
king's permission to marry his daughter Irandati. The Naga king himself is addressing 
the Yaksha as shown by his upraised right hand. The place of meeting is the interior of 
the king's palace in the Naga-loka. To the left is seen the outer gate of the palace, with 
the back of a man who is going inside. 

Lowermost scene, marked C. — This bas-relief is unfortunately incomplete, but I have 
little hesitation in suggestiag that it is intended to present the Yaksha Purnaka gambling 
with Dhananjaya, Eaja of Indrapatta or Delhi, for the possession of the wise Pandit 
Vidhura. The figure of the Yaksha is known by his costume and ornaments, as well as 
by the presence of his aerial steed immediately behind him. As the Yaksha is repre- 
sented seated with a table in front of him, I conclude that King Dhananjaya must have 
been seated opposite to him. The gateway of the Raja's palace is seen to the left with a 
man coming out. It is similar in all respects to the gateway of the palace in the 

Middle scene, marked B. — In this large bas-relief I believe that several portions of 
the story are represented in continuous action. In the lower right corner the Yaksha 
appears just beginning his aerial journey, which is continued further to the left where 
the Pandit Vidhura is seen holding on by the tail of the flying steed, which is rapidly 
approaching the rocks and forest of the Himalaya. In the upper right comer the 
Yaksha has seized the Pandit by the feet and is dashing his head on the rocks, and in 
the upper left corner the Pandit is seen standing by the side of the Yaksha, and teaching 
him the Sudhwrma, or " Excellent Law " of Buddha, the precepts of which he enforces 
with his upraised hand. 

With this scene the sculptured illustrations of the Vidhura Jdtaka come to an end, 
as the bas-reliefs of the adjacent face of the Pillar refer to some other legend. But with 
the conversion of the Yaksha the real story of the Jataka also ends, as the marriage of 
the Naga princess to Purnaka, and the return of the wise Pandit Vidhura to Indapatta, 
are only the natural results of the previous incidents, all of which have been clearly, 
although somewhat rudely, represented in these Bharhut bas-reliefs. 


Besides the Jdtahas, there is a large number of other curious scenes, several of which 
are labelled. Amongst them are some of the greatest historical interest, as they refer 
directly to events, either true or supposed, in the actual career of S^kya Muni himself. 
Of these, six have their names inscribed over them, and a seventh is recognized by its 
subject. These are as follows : — 


1. Tikutiko Ctakamo. 

2. Maya Devi's dream. 

3. The Jetavana Monastery. 

4. Indra Sala-guta. 

5. Yisit of Aj^tasatru to Buddha. 

6. Yisit of Prasenajita to Buddha. 

7. The Sankisa Ladder. 

1. Tikutiko Ohakamo. 

When I first saw this scene, I took it to be a representation of the Naga-loka, which 
the Hindu Cosmogonies, both Buddhistical and Brahmanical, place at the foot of the 
Trikutilca Eocks. The presence of no less than seven Elephants (or Nagas), and of one 
great three-headed Serpent (or Naga) seemed to confirm this identification. But it has 
been objected that the presence of two Lions is fatal to this attribution. 

2. Dream op Mata Devi. 

The dream of Mayi Devi, the mother of Sakya Muni, is one of the commonest 
subjects of Buddhist Sculpture. A white Elephant of the GJihadanta breed approached 
the princess in her sleep, and appeared to enter into her womb by her right side. In the 
Tibetan version of the Lalita Vistara the term Chhadanta is translated into six tusks.^ 
According to the Burmese account it was a " young white Elephant," and in his trunk he 
carried a white lily.^ The Oeylonese, whose account should be the same as the Burmese, 
as both were derived from a common source, are altogether sUent about the Elephant, 
and simply state that Bodhisat appeared to MayS, Devi " like a cloud in the moonlight 
" coming from the North, and in his hand holding a lotus."* This is Spence Hardy's 
account, which I do not clearly understand, as it seems difficult to imagine a cloud with a 
hand, even in the brightest moonlight. 

In the Bharhut Sculpture the Elephant has only two tusks, but they are marked 
to represent three tusks each. There can be no doubt, therefore, that the name of 
Chhadanta was supposed to refer to " six tusks " as early, at least, as the time of Asoka. 
But Chhadanta is also said to be the name of a country.* 

The Bharhut medallion representing the dream of May4 Devi is on the inner face of 
one of the Railing pillars close to the Eastern Gate. Above it in large characters is 
inscribed Bhagavato ruMcmta, which may perhaps be translated by " Buddha as the 
" sounding elephant," from ru, " to sound," to make a particular sort of sound, as the 
Burmese account of the dream describes that ," his voice occasionally resounding through 
" the air could be heard distinctly by the inmates of the grotto, and indicated his 
" approach."^ In corroboration of this reading, I may quote the parallel account of the 
Jains of the first object seen by Queen Trisala in her dream. This is described as an 
" elephant with four tusks, looking like radiant drops of dew, or a heap of pearls, or the 

1 Foucaux's translation from the Tibetan, pp. 61-83. Csoma de Koros gives " six tranks," but this is 
perhaps a misprint. See Transactions Bengal Asiatic Society, XX. p. 287. 

2 Bigandet, " Legend of the Burmese Buddha," p. 16. 

3 Manual of Buddhism, p. 142. 

* Tumour's Mahawanso, pp. 22 and 134. 

M 2 


" sea of milk, possessing a radiance like the moon, huge as the silvery mountain 
" Vaitddhya, while from his temples oozed out the sweet liquid that attracts the swarms 
" of bees. Such was the incomparably stately elephant, equal to Airavat himself, which 
" Queen Trisala saw, while uttermg a fitie deep sound, with his trunk filhd with water, liJce 
" th/imder."^ 

In the Bharhut Sculpture the Princess is represented in the centre of the medallion 
sleeping quietly on her couch, with her right hand under her head, and her left hand by 
her side. The position leaves her right side exposed. The time is night, as a lamp is 
burning at the foot of the bed, on an ornamental stand. Three women are seated in 
attendance by the bed, one of whom is waving the cow-tail chawri to keep off insects. 
The second has her arms extended, but for what purpose is not clear. The third with 
joined hands sits in an attitude of devotion. Maya Devi is in full costume, with earrings, 
necklace, bracelets, and anklets, and numerous girdles, all complete. The Elephant has 
an ornamental cloth, covering the top of his head,^ but he carries no flower in his trunk, 
as in the Burmese account of his appearance before the Princess. 

There are a few representations of this scene amongst the Buddhist Sculptures from 
the Yusafzai districts, now in the Lahore Museum, and there is a single bas-relief of the 
same scene from the Dipaldinna Stupa at Amaravati on the Kistna River, which is now 
in the Calcutta Museum. In none of these has the Elephant got more than two tusks, 
nor does he carry a flower. The Bharhut Sculpture is in a very fine state of preservation, 
but the workmanship is coarse, and the position of Maya Devi is stiff and formal. 

3. Jetavana Monastery. 

The view of the celebrated Jetavana Monastery is preserved in the circular medallion 
of one of the Pillars.^ The following inscription, which is placed immediately below the 
sculpture, gives the name of the monastery, as well as that of the munificent builder 
Anatha-pindika :—* 

Jetavana Anddhapedilco deti Kotisanthatena Ketd, 
which Mr. Childers thus translates — ^ 

" Anathapindiko presents Jetavana, (having 
become) its purchaser for a layer of kotis." 

Before giving the legend itself regarding the layer of Kotis (of gold coins) which 
Anathapindika spread over the garden of Prince Jeta as the purchase money, I think it 
best to quote the very interesting and apt illustration which Mr. Childers has given of 
the inscription :" "I had long been anxious to find the Pali version of the story of 
" Anathapindika, in order to ascertain whether its language bears out that of the Bharhut 
" inscription. It occurred to me this morning that the story might be found in 
" Buddhaghosa's Introduction (Niddna) to the Buddhist Jataka. I at once examined 
" that work, and found, to my great delight, not only the story of Anathapindika, but 

^ Dr. Stevenson's Kalpa Sutra, p. 42. 

2 In the Lalita Vistara translated from Tibetan by Foucaux, p. 83, the Elephant with six tusks is described 
as being " bien pares d'or et de paries, et revetus d'un reseau d'or." 

3 See Plate XXVIII. fig. 3 ; No. XV., Pillar. S. E. quadi-ant ; also Plate LVII. for a large view. , 
* See Plate LIII., Pillar XV. No. 20, for this inscription. 

s See "The Academy" for 28th Nov. 1874, p. 586. 
8 See « The Academy" for 5th Dec. 1874, p. 612. 


" tlie~very expression a ' layer of Kotis,' wMcli is a crucial one in tlie inscription. The 
" passage is as follows : — 

" ' Tasmim samaye Andthapindiho gahapati . . . Jetavanam Eotisantharena 
" ' attharasahirannakotihi Kinitva navakammam patthapesi. So majjlie Dasabalassa 
" ' Gamdhakutim karesi,' "whicli means, ' At that time the householder Anathapindiko, 
" ' having purchased the garden of Jeta for a layer of kotis, for 18 kotis of gold, began 
" ' to build {lit. set on foot the new works). In the midst he built Buddha's pavilion.' 

" I have placed in italics the words which this passage has in common with the 
" inscription, and it will be seen that every word of the inscription is found in the 
" passage except deti, which, however, occurs further on. The words santhatena and 
" santharena are exact synonymes, and kinitava, ' having purchased,' corresponds to 
" keta, ' purchaser.' The text distinctly states that Buddha's house was on the Jetavana 
" grounds, and sure enough there it is in the bas-relief." 

" After a brief enumeration of the monastic buildings erected by Anathapindiko at 
" Jetavana, the narrative proceeds to describe the triumphal progress of Grautama from 
" R4jagaha to Savatthi, and the pomp with which the wealthy Setthi went forth to meet 
" him. Then we read : — 

" ' Bhagava imam upisakaparisam purato katva mahabhikkusanghaparivuto * * 
" ' * * Jetavanavih4ram pavisi. Atha nam Anathapindiko pucchi. Kathaham bhante 
" ' imasmim vihare patipajjamiti ? Tenahi gahapati imam viharam agatanagatassa 
" ' bhikkhusanghassa dehiti. Sadhu bhante ti mak^setthi suvannabhinkaram 4daya 
" ' Dasabalassa hatthi udakam patetv^, imam Jetavanaviharam agatanagatassa, Buddha- 
" ' pamukhassa sanghassa dammiti adasi.' 

" The Blessed One, preceded by this procession of devout laymen and followed by 
" a great company of monks, entered the Monastery of Jetavana. Then Anathapindiko 
" asked him, ' Lord, how am I to proceed in the matter of this monastery?' ' Since you 
" ' ask me, householder, bestow this monastery upon the Buddhist clergy, present and 
" ' to come.' And the great Setthi replying, ' It is well,' the Lord took a golden ewer, 
" and pouring water ilpon Buddha's hand, made the donation with these words : ' This 
" monastery of Jetavana I give to the clergy, present and to come, in all parts of the 
" ' world, with the Buddha at their head.' Here we have the only remaining word 
" unaccounted for in the inscription, for addsi in the text answers to deti, and we have 
" no difficulty in identifying the ' golden ewer ' with the vessel which Anathapindiko 
" in the picture is holding in his hands." 

In the curious scenes just described the sculptor has apparently aimed at giving a 
view of the great Buddhist Vihara of Jetavana, whilst illustrating the story of its 
establishment by Andthapindilca. Thus we know that the holy tree surrounded with a 
Buddhist railing, and the two Temples respectively labelled Gandha-huti and Kosamba- 
hdi, did not form any part of the original garden of Prince Jeta. There are, however, 
four other trees which are no doubt intended to represent the garden, or most probably 
only the Sandal-wood trees, which alone were left standing, while the rest of the scene 
illustrates the famous story of the purchase of the garden for as many gold masv/rans as 
would suffice to cover its surface. The story is a favourite one with Buddhists, and has 
been told at length by Spence Hardy, from whom I quote the following passage :— ^ 

Manual of Buddhism, pp. 218, 219. 


" When Anepidu (or Anithapindiko) returned to Sewet (or Sravasti) lie examined 
carefully tlie suburbs of the city, that he might find a suitable place for the erection 
of the Yihara, not too near nor too distant. At last he found a place of this des- 
cription belonging to the Prince Jeta. But when he asked the prince to dispose of 
it, he replied that he would not let him have it, unless he were to cover it over with 
golden masurcms. . ' It is a bargain,' replied Anepidu, ' upon these conditions the 
' garden is mine.' When the prince saw that he was serious, he was unwilling to 
abide by what he had said ; and as Anepidu would not give up his right, the matter 
was referred to a court of justice, and decided against the prince. Jeta then reflected. 
' My garden is a thousand cubits in length and breadth ; no one has wealth enough 
' to be able to cover it with gold ; it is therefore yet mine, though the case is decided 
' against me.' The prince and Anepidu went together to the garden, and saw that all 
the useful trees were cut down, only such trees as sandal and mango being permitted 
to remain ; and the whole place was made perfectly level. Then Anepidu called his 
treasurer, and commanded that his stores of wealth should be entered, as many 
maswoms brought out as would be necessary. The treasurer accordingly emptied 
seven stores, and measured the golden maswrans as if they had been grain. The 
maswrans were measured to the extent of 90 yalas, and were then brought and thrown 
down in the garden ; and a thousand men, each taking up a bundle of money, began 
to cover the garden. Anepidu commanded his servants to measure the space occupied 
by the standing trees, and to give as many masurans as would have been required if 
they had not been there, that he might lose no part of the merit he hoped to gain. 
When he saw that the entrance was not covered, he commanded his treasurer to break 
open another of the stores, and bring a further supply, though he knew by the plates 
of copper on which his wealth was numbered, that the store preserved by his fore- 
father in the seventh generation backward had been opened, and that the whole sum 
disposed of amounted to 18 hotis of masurans. But when Jeta saw that although 
Anepidu had already given so much he was equally ready to give more, he reflected 
that it would be well for him. also to partake in the merit, and declared that the sum 
he had received was sufficient. After this was concluded Anepidu began the erection 
of the Yihara. Around it were houses for the priests ; offices that were suitable for 
the day,*and others for the night; an ambulatory; tanks and gardens of fruit and 
flower trees; and around the whole, extending 4,000 cubits, was a wall 18 cubits 
high. The whole of these erections cost 18 kotis of maswrans. In addition, Anepidu 
had many friends who assisted him, some by their personal labour, and others by 
their wealth. Jeta also said, ' What has a prince to do with money procured from a 
'merchant?' So he expended the whole of the 18 kotis he had received in building 
a palace seven stories high at each of the four sides of the garden." 

The Chinese pilgrim Hwen Thsang repeats the same story in a very concise form, 
adding that Prince Jeta's demand, for as much gold as would cover the surface of the 
garden, was only said in jest.^ Fa Hian also mentions the Jetavana as " the plot of 
" ground which the nobleman Sudatta bought after covering it with gold coins." ^ 

I have given the above extracts with the view of making my description of the 
Bharhut Sculpture more readily intelligible. I have already mentioned the two temples, 

1 Julien's Hwen Thsang, II. 297. 

2 Beal's Fa Hian, p. 79. Sudatta is only another name for Anathapindiko. 


and the four trees which represent the garden. To the right of the Kosamba-Jcuti and 
below the Ocmdha-kuH there is a single mango tree surrounded by a Buddhist railing, 
which is without doubt intended for the holy mango tree, the stone of which was planted 
by Ananda according to Buddha's instructions. According to the Burmese account,^ 
" A gardener gave him, in present, a large mango fruit. Ananda prepared the fruit 
" and Buddha ate it. "When this was done, the stone was handed to Ananda, with an 
" injunction to plant it in a place prepared to receive it. "When planted, Budda washed 
" his hands over it, and on a sudden there sprung up a beautiful white mango tree, 
" 50 cubits high, with large branches loaded with blossoms and fruit. To prevent its 
" being destroyed, a guard was set near it, by the king's order. Dismayed at such a 
wonderful sign, the heretics fled in every direction, to conceal their shame and 
" confusion." 

In the foreground there is a bullock cart, with the bullocks unyoked sitting beside 
it, and with the yoke tilted up in the air to show that the cart has been unloaded. In 
front are two men, each holding a very small object between his thumb and forefinger. 
These two I take to be Anathapindika himself, and his treasurer, counting out the gold 
pieces brought in the cart. Above them are two other figures seated, and busily engaged 
in covering the surface of the garden with the gold coins, which are here represented 
as square pieces touching one another. If these squares were intended for a pavement 
of any kind they would have broken bond, instead of which they are laid out just like 
the squares of a chess board. From this arrangement I infer without hesitation that 
they are intended for the gold coins with which Anathapindika engaged to cover the 
whole area of the garden as the price of its purchase. To the left are six other figures, 
whom I take to be Prince Jeta and his friends ; and in the very middle of the compo- 
sition there is Anathapindika himself carrying a vessel, just like a tea kettle, in both 
hands, for the purpose of pouring water over Buddha's hands as a pledge of the 
completion of his gift. 

The story is suflaciently well told by the sculptor, who has wisely limited his work to 
a few of its leading features, such as the largeness of the sum of money which required 
a cart for its conveyance, the counting of the coins, and the spreading of the gold pieces 
over the whole surface of the garden. But to me the chief interest of the scene lies in 
the two temples, which I take to be actual representations of the two buildings bearing 
the respective names of Oandha-JcuH and Kosamba-huti. It is true that their insertion 
in the scene is an anachronism, as the temples could not have been buUt until after the 
purchase of the garden. If they had been mere buildings without names they might 
perhaps have been looked upon as simple garden houses ; but with the significant names 
that are attached to them, I have no doubt whatever that they are faithful represen- 
tations of the two temples which bore those titles, as far as the powers of the artist 
enabled him to reproduce them. The Kosamba-huti is also mentioned in an old inscrip- 
tion which I dug up within the precincts of the Jetavana monastery itself early in 1864.^ 
This temple was, therefore, still in existence when the inscription was recorded in the 
first century B.C. A comparison of the alphabetical characters of this record with 
those of the Bharhut bas-relief wUl show at a glance how great a change had taken 
place in the Indian letters within the short space of two centuries. 

1 Bigandet, Legend of the Burmese Buddha, p. 205. 

2 Koyal Asiatic Society's Journal, New Series, Vol. V. p. 192, and accompanying Plate XXXII, 


4. Indea-SIla Guha. 

It is unfortunate ttat the bas-relief of the famous cave in wliicli Buddha was living 
when Indra paid him a visit to propound his 42 questions has been injured by the 
cutting away of both sides of the circular medallion to fit the pillar as an architrave 
in one of the cenotaphs at Batanmara. But the whole of the middle part is still in 
excellent preservation, and the inscribed label is in perfect order. The words are simply 
Indra-sdla-guha, or " Indra's Hall Cave." This is the name by which the cave is known 
in the Pali books of Ceylon ; but the Chinese pilgrim Hwen Thsang calls it iTidra-saila- 
guha, or Indra-sila-guha, and the latter form is found in the Buddhist inscription from 
Grhosrawa in Bihar.^ I have identified this cave with the Cave of Gidhadwar in the 
South face of the double-peaked mountain above Griryek. This cave is also mentioned 
by Fa Hian, but without giving its name.^ Hwen Thsang's notice is almost equally 
brief, and the only detailed account of Indra's visit to Buddha that I have been able 
to find is that given by Spence Hardy.^ This account I now give in fuU for comparison 
with the Bharhut Sculpture. 

" At one time Buddha resided in the cave called Indrasala, in the rock Wedi, at the 
" North side of the Brahman village Ambasanda, on the east of Rajagaha. Sakra was 
" long desirous of paying a visit to the teacher of the three worlds, but on account of 
" the multitude of affairs that required his attention, he did not meet with a proper 
" opportunity. When he thought about his death, he was greatly afraid, as he knew 
" that he must then leave all his power and treasures. This made him look about, to 
" see if there was any being in the three worlds who could assist him and take away 
" his fear, when he perceived it was in the power of Buddha alone to render him the 
" aid he required. Accordingly he issued his command that the D^was should accom- 
" pany him to the residence of Buddha. There was a reason for this command. On a 
" former occasion, when Buddha was residing in Jetavana Vihara, Sakra went alone to 
" see him and hear bana ; but as the sage foresaw that if he obliged him to come again 
" he would then be accompanied by 80,000 Dewas, who would thereby be enabled to 
" enter the paths, he did not permit him to come into his presence, and he had to return 
" to his loka without accomplishing the object of his visit. It was because he thought 
" if he again went alone he would meet with a similar reception, that he now called 
" the Dewas to accompany him. In a moment's time the whole company came from 
" the dewa-loka to the rock "Wedi, and rested upon it like a thousand suns. It was now 
" evening, and the people were sitting at their doors, either playing with their children 
" or eating their food. When they perceived the light upon the rock they said that 
" some great Dewa or Brahma must have come to pay honour to Buddha." 

To announce his arrival to the sage Sakra sent forward the Dewa Panchasikha who 
took with him his harp, 12 miles in length ; and having worshipped Buddha he began to 
sing certain stanzas, which admitted of two interpretations, and might either be regarded 
as setting forth the honour of Buddha, or as speaking in the praise of Suriyawachasa 
daughter of the Dewa Timbara. His voice was accompanied by the tones of the harp. 
In this manner the praises of the pure being and the praises of evil were mingled 

1 Journal of Bengal Asiatic Society, 1848, p. 495, "beautiful as the peak of the Mouut Indra Sila " 

2 Beal's Fa Hian, CXXVIII. ; Julien's Hwen Thsang, III. 58. 
s Manual of Buddhism, p. 288. 


together, like ambrosia and poison in the same vessel. Buddha said to the D^wa, " Thy 
" music and thy song are . in harmony," and he commanded that Sakra should be 
admitted, lest he should be tired with waiting and go away, whereby great loss would 
be sustained by him and his followers. From the delay, Sakra had begun to think that 
the dancer was forgetting his errand and speaking about his own matters to the sage ; 
and he therefore sent to tell him not to talk so much, but to procure his permission to 
enter the honourable presence. The years appointed to Sakra being nearly ended, 
Buddha knew that it would not be right to say to him on entering, in the usual manner, 
"May your age be multiplied!" and he therefore addressed him and the others 
collectively ; but by this salutation, three kotis and 60,000 years were added to his life, 
as the ruler of the Dewa-loka of which he was then chief. Buddha and Sakra alone 
knew of this result. 

On comparing this account with the Bharhut Sculpture, I notice that Indra's harper, 
the D^wa Panchasikha is represented on the left side with harp in hand. The seated 
figures in the middle of the bas-relief I take to be Indra and his companions, as Buddha 
is nowhere represented in person amongst the Bharhut Sculptures. His invisible presence 
is indicated by the throne canopied by an umbrella. The rocky nature of the mountain 
is shown by piles of rock above the cave. 

5. Visit of AjAtasatru to Buddha. 

The visit of Ajatasatru to Buddha is represented on one of the comer pillars of the 
Western Gateway.^ The story is told at length in the Sdnanna-phaia-sutta, which has 
been translated by Burnouf, and in a more concise form by Spence Hardy, from the Pali 
books of Ceylon.^ After the murder of his father, the king had been unable to sleep, 
and he sought the presence of Buddha, by the advice of his physician Jivaka, in the hope 
that the great Teacher might be able to ease his troubled mind. The Eaja left his 
palace at night by torchlight, mounted on an elephant, and accompanied by 500 women, 
also on elephants, and a still greater number on foot. This part of the scene is 
represented in the lower part of the Bharhut Sculpture, where the EaJa, driving his 
elephant with his own hand, is followed by several women on elephants, whUe an 
attendant carries an umbrella over his head. In this small sculpture there is no room 
for the representation of any of the city gates of Rajagriha, — and of the garden of 
Jivaka under the Gridhra Icuta, or mountain of the Vulture peak, there is only one trace 
shown. But within the narrow limits of a very small bas-relief the sculptor has 
contrived to represent three diflFerent phases of the story. First we have the king's 
procession to the garden ; then his dismounting from the Elephant near the dwelling 
place of Buddha; and lastly, his devotion at the BodhimaTida, or throne of Buddha, 
which is the symbol of Buddha, as the sage himself is nowhere represented in any of the 
Bharhut Sculptures. 

In the Ceylonese version the women, who were mounted on elephants, are said to 
have carried " weapons in their hands." In the present sculpture, however, they carry 
only elephants' goads, and these were perhaps the only arms of the original story, 
which were afterwards converted into weapons. In the second portion of the scene, the 
dismounted Raja stands with his right hand raised in the attitude of addressing his 

1 See Plate XVI. fig. 3. * ^e Lotus de la bonne Loi, p. 449. 

H 255. N 


followers. No doubt this is intended to represent Ajatasatru putting the question to 
Jivaka, " Where is the Buddha ? " or " Which is Buddha 1 "^ In both the Indian and the 
Ceylonese versions Buddha is described as being seated near the middle pillars of the 
Vihara. But in the Bharhut Sculpture Buddha himself is not represented at all ; and 
accordingly only his footprints are seen on the step or footstool in front of the 
JBodhimcmda throne. On the right-hand piUar, which serves as part of the frame to this 
interesting scene, there is the following short inscription : — 

Ajatasatru Bhagavato vcmdate; 
that is, " AjMasatru worships (the footprints) of Buddha."^ 

6. Visit op Peasenajita to Buddha. 
The visit of Prasenajita Eaja of Kosala to the Pwnya-8dla of Buddha is represented 
on one of the broken pillars of the South Grate.^ The label inscribed upon it, in two short 
lines, reads simply — 

Bcya Pasenaji 

When the Chinese pilgrim Hwen Thsang visited Sravasti, the Pimya Sala of 
Prasenajit was already a complete ruin, on the top of which the people had built a small 
Stupa.^ But in this ancient sculpture of Bharhut we have placed before us a detailed 
representation of the famous building which I think we] may accept, without any great 
stretch of probability, as an actual view of the Punya Sala which Eaja Prasenajita erected 
in the city of Sravasti for the use of Buddha. 

The building itself will be described in detail in another place, but I may mention 
here that it is a two-storied edifice, the lower part being apparently an open-pillared 
room for the establishment of a large wheel, which occupies the middle of the front. 
This is appropriately labelled — 

Bhagavato dhama GhaTcam,^ 
that is, " Buddha's Dharma Chakra," or " Wheel of the Law," a symbol which here 
takes the place of Buddha himself. It is, I believe, intended as a type of the advance- 
ment of the Buddhist faith by preaching, and thus becomes an emblem of Buddha the 
Teacher, in the same way that the Bodhimamda, or seat on which Sakya Muni sat for six 
years in meditation, is used as a symbol of Buddha the Ascetic in aU the Bharhut Sculp- 
tures, where the figure of Buddha himself is never represented. The Wheel has a 
garland hanging from its axle, and is surmounted by an umbrella figured with garlands, 
On each side stands a worshipper, with both hands joined upon his breast in an attitude 
of devotion. 

The Pimya 8dla, or " Hall of Eeligious Merit," occupies all the upper portion of the 
bas-relief, save a narrow strip on each side. In these strips we have the head and tail of 
the procession, the whole of the lower half being occupied with the main body, and the 

1 See Burnouf, Le Lotus de la bonne Loi, p. 451, "ami Jevaka, on est done Bhagavat," and Hardy's ManuaJ 
of Buddhism. 

2 See Plate LIV., No. 62 inscription. 3 See Plate XIII. fig. 3. 

* See Plate LIV. No. 14, for a copy of the inscription. This would appear to have been his usual appellation, 
as the Ceylon books call him Pasenadi Kosala, and the Burmese books Pathanadi Kosala. 

5 Julian's Hwen Thsang, II. 294. 8 gee Plate LIV. fig. 13, for this inscription. 


gateway of tlie palace through which the E^ja has just passed. The leader of the 
procession is apparently a footman, who is closely followed by a horseman, whose back 
only is represented together with the hind part of his horse. Next comes another foot- 
man. All these who have turned upwards to the left are closely followed by Raja 
Prasenajita in a chariot drawn by four horses abreast. The horses are gaily caparisoned 
with lofty plumes and plaited manes. The Eaja is attended by three servants, of whom 
one carries the Indian Ohawn, and a second holds an umbrella over his head. The third 
is the charioteer, although the art of driving chariots as well as elephants was in those 
early times part of the usual education of a young prince, as we learn from the curious 
account of the bringing up of Sakya himself.^ Behind the chariot is the palace gateway, 
through which three followers are passing. Unfortunately only their heads now remain, 
as the whole of the lower right corner of the sculpture, including the horses' legs and the 
greater portion of the chariot wheels, has been broken off. Behind the gateway, and 
advancing towards it, are two other followers mounted on elephants, who close the 

The interest of this remarkable scene is divided between the great Eaja Prasenajita 
and the famous Buddhist symbol of the Dharma Chakra. In the other scene, which I 
have lately described, Ajatasatru's visit to Buddha, the Raja is mounted on an elephant. 
The Bharhut Sculptures have thus fortunately presented us with two of the principal 
scenes of royal life in ancient India : one Raja riding his elephant, and another riding in 
his chariot. And these scenes become still more interesting when we remember that 
Buddhist history specially mentions that Ajatasatru paid his visit to Buddha mounted on 
an elephant, while Prasenajita rode in a chariot. The account of the latter Rija's visit is 
given by Bumouf from a Buddhist Sutra, in which the Raja is made to call for his 
chariot, as he wished to show honour to Buddha.^ " Alors Prasenajit dit a unde ses 
" gens : va, et attele promptement un bon char ; j'y monterai pour aller voir aujourd' 
" hui meme Bhagavat, afin de lui faire honneur. Alors Pras^nadjit, roi du Kogala, 
" etant monte sur ce bon char, sortit de Cravasti et se dirigea vers Bhagavat, dans 
" I'intention de le voir, afin de lui honneur." 

A second specimen of a four-horse chariot was found by Mr, Beglar on a pillar in 
the Thakur's private residence at Batanmira. It is the Mugapahha Jdtakam. 

7. The Sankisa Ladder. 

Another scene about which there can be no mistake is that of the great Ladder by 
which Buddha descended at Sankisa from the Trayastrinsas heavens.® This bas-relief is 
on the same corner pillar as that last described, and is in excellent preservation. The 
Ladder is represented as a triple flight of solid stone steps, similar in all respects to the 
single flight of steps which was found at the "Western Gateway of the Stupa. The legend 
of the Sankisa Ladder is related by both of the Chinese pilgrims, as well as by the Pali 
annalists of Ceylon. But the earliest notice that I have yet discovered is that of the 
Asoka Avadana translated by Burnouf .* The main points of the legend are the same in 

1 Lalita Vistara, translated by Foucaux from Tibetan, p. 150, "I'equitation sur le cou de Telephaiit, sur le 
dos du cheval, la conduite des chars." 

2 Introduction a I'Histoire du Buddhisme Indien, p. 169. 

3 See Plate XVII., central compartment. 

* Introduction h I'Histoire du Buddhisme Indien, p. 398, 

N 2 


all the accounts, but there are many differences in the details. According to Spence 
Hardy, Buddha visited the Trayastrinsas heavens to preach his doctrine to the Devas^ as 
well as to his mother Maya Devi. At the end of three months, his purpose having been 
accomplished, he determined to visit the earth at the city of Sakaspura, that is, Sankassa 
or Sankisa in Pali, and Sankasya in Sanskrit. Then " Sakra (Indra) reflected that he 
" (Buddha) had come from the earth at three steps, but that it would be right to 
" celebrate his departure with special honours. He therefore caused a Ladder of gold 
" to extend from Mahameru to Sakaspura. At the right side of this Ladder there was 
" another, also of gold, upon which the Defvas appeared, with instruments of music ; and 
" on the left there was another of silver upon which the Brahma appeared holding 
" canopies of umbrellas. These Ladders were more than 80,000 yojanas in length, 
" The steps in the Ladder of Buddha were alternately of gold, silver, coral, ruby, emerald, 
" and other gems, and it was beautifully ornamented. The whole appeared to the people 
" of the earth like three rainbows."^ 

The account of Fa Hian thus describes the scene of the triple Ladder.* " "When 
" Buddha went up to the Trayastrinsas heavens to say hmia for the sake of his mother, 
" after three months he descended at this place (Sankisa)," . . . "At the appointed 
" time the Maharajas of the eight kingdoms, and all the ministers and people, not having 
" «een Buddha for so long, greatly desired to meet him. They flocked, therefore, in great 
" crowds to this country to await the return of the world-honoured one. Then the 
" Bhikshuni TJtpala began to think thus with herself, ' To-day the king, ministers, and 
" ' people are all going to meet Buddha and render homage to him, but I, a woman, how 
" ' can I contrive to get the first sight of him ? ' Buddha immediately by his divine 
" power changed her into a holy Chakravarti Eaja, and in that capacity she was 
" the first to reverence Buddha on his return. Buddha was now about to descend from 
" the Trayastrinsas heavens. At this time there appeared a threefold precious Ladder. 
" Buddha standing above the middle Ladder, which was made of the seven precious sub- 
" stances, began to descend. Then the king of the Brahma-JcayiJcas {i.e. Brahma) caused 
" a silver Ladder to appear, and took his place on the right hand, holding a white Ghawii 
" in his hand ; whilst the divine Salera (Indra) caused a bright golden Ladder to appear, 
" and took his place on the left hand, holding a precious Parasol in his hand. Innumer- 
" able Devas were in attendance while Buddha descended. After he had accomplished 
" his return the three Ladders aU disappeared in the earth, except seven steps which still 
" continued visible." 

The account of the later pilgrim Hwen Thsang is substantially the same as that of 
Pa Hian, but as it is brief, and differs in some of the details, it is better to give it entire.* 
" Indra, the king of heaven, exerting his supernatural powers, set up three precious 
" Ladders. The middle one was of gold, that on the left side was of crystal, and on the 
" right of silver. Buddha having left the pimya sola, accompanied by a crowd of Devas 
" descended by the middle Ladder. MahS, Brahma, carrying a white Ghauri, came down 
" by the silver Ladder, and Indra, the lord of heaven, carrying a gem-adorned parasol 
" came down by the crystal Ladder on the left. The crowd of Devas springing into the 
" air scattered a shower of flowers." The pilgrim adds, " That the three original Ladders 

1 Manual of Buddhism, p. 298. * Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, pp. 300-301. 

3 Beal's Fft Hian, p. 62. * Julien's Hwen Thsang, II. 238. 


" had completely disappeared, but that the people had set up three others, similar to 
" them, made of stone and brick, over which they had erected a Vihdra, containing a 
" stone statue of Buddha, with statues of Indra and Brahma standing on the steps to the 
" left and right, as if about to descend." 

At Kurkihar in Bihar I have seen a statue of Buddha attended by Indra and Brahma 
holding respectively a Parasol and a Chauri, but the date of the sculpture could not be 
older than the ninth or tenth century. In the Bharhut Sculptures, where Buddha is never 
represented in person, we could not expect to see either Indra or Brahm4, But we have 
three flying figures, who no doubt represent the crowd of Devas, carrying flowers and 
garlands. The triple Ladder occupies the middle of the scene with a Bodhi tree and a 
Vajrdscm at its foot. There is one footprint on the top step and a second footprint on 
the bottom step of the middle Ladder. These are, of course, intended for the footprints 
of Buddha, and in his absence they form the invisible objects of reverence. A number of 
spectators on all sides is intended to represent the crowd of kings, ministers, and people, 
who, according to Fa Hian, flocked to Sankisa to await the return of Buddha. The scene 
is clearly the same ; and although Buddha is never represented in person in the Bharhut 
Sculptures, the triple Ladder shows that as early at least as the time of Asoka the legend 
had already appropriated the Brahmanioal gods Indra and Brahma as the attendants of 
Buddha's descent from heaven. 

I have since obtained a small seal of burnt clay from the Bihar mound near Sankisa. 
on which the triple Ladder is represented surmounted by a Buddhist Railing, Above each 
there is a single letter of the Gupta alphabet, that on the left of the seal being Ba for 
Brahma, and that on the right 8a for Sakra, or Indra, the two Devas who accompanied 
Buddha on his descent from the Triyastrinsas heavens. The seal was originally coated 
with a light blue glaze, of which a great part still remains, but very much faded in 


Besides the Jatakas and the quasi-historical scenes, there is a great number of 
other scenes, both labelled and unlabelled, several of which are extremely curious and 
interesting, although few of the stories have yet been made out either fully or satis- 
factorily. Ten of these scenes are inscribed, and as they would seem to offer the best 
chance of identification I will begin with them. 

1. Jatila Sabhd. — This sculpture is unfortunately broken, which is the more to bo 
regretted as the scene would have been one of the most interesting subjects of the 
whole series.^ The only portions now remaining are a tree with rocks, and half of the 
head and upper part of the body of a man. But there can be little doubt that the 
original scene represented the " Assembly of the Jatilians," Jatila 8ahM, who were the 
followers of Uruvilva Kisyapa.^ The Mahawanso states that he had 1,000 disciples, 
but Spence Hardy gives him only 500 followers. This K^syapa and his two brothers 
were fire-worshippers, and as such they are represented both in the Sanchi and in the 
Gandhara Sculptures. It is, therefore, very unfortunate that this still earlier represen- 

1 See Plate LIIL Copings Y. 13, for the inscription. ^ Tumour's Mahawtinso, p. 2. 


tation of tlie Assembly of the Jatilian fire-worsliippers should have been so seriously- 
mutilated. The name is said to have been derived from jatcm assa attithi, " he who has 
" a top-knot of matted hair." This seems to be the peculiar headdress of the fire- 
Vvorshippers in all these sculptures. It is curious, and perhaps not accidental, that the 
present peculiar cap of the Parsis has precisely the same shape and backward slope as 
the matted hair of these fire-worshippers of ancient India. 

2. MigasamadiJca Ghetiya} — This scene occupies one of the small panels of the 
coping. In the middle of the bas-reliefs there is a tree, which must be the Ghaitya 
mentioned in the label. Seated around are two Lions and six Deer living most amicably 
together. This is the subject which I suppose to be alluded* to in the inscription, where 
I take Samadiha to mean the " eating together " of the Lions and Deer under the tree, 
which was accordingly named the " Ohaitya under which Lions and Deer ate together." 

3. Amhode Ghetiyam? — This is another small bas-relief from the coping. In the 
centre stands a tree to which three Elephants are paying reverence. The tree is the 
ATnh, or mango, and must therefore be the Amhode Ghetvya, or " Chaitya mango tree " 
mentioned in the label. 

4. Dadcmi-Jccumo-chaha/mo.^ — In this very curious scene an altar or throne occupies 
the middle place, behind which are four Lions with gaping mouths, and to the right ' 
five men standing in front of a sixth, who sits on the ground to the left in a contem- 
plative attitude, with his head leaning on his left hand. In front are two gigantic 
human heads, with a human hand between them, and towards the throne or altar a 
bundle of faggots burning. I conjecture that this scene represents one of the 16 
Buddhist hells, or places of punishment. This seems to be borne out by the inscription, 
which I would render as the place (chalcamo or chahra) of punishing (dadani or daThdoMi) 
works {Tcoumo or Jcarma) that is the division of the kosmos in which works (karma) 
received their reward, or in other words " hell." 

5. Ohitu-pdda-sila.* — As the chief feature in this scene is a " Split rock," I think 
that OMtni may be intended for Ghhitu, " splitting," of the rock (sila) ; but I am unable 
to explain pdda. The scene represented in the sculpture shows two parties of two men 
each seated on a broad-topped rock, and playing at some game like draughts. A square 
space on the surface of the rock is divided into 36 small squares, and beside the square 
are several small square pieces, with marks on the top, which have evidently been used 
in playing the game. They are exactly the same as the coins used for paving the 
Jetavana. But lo ! the rock has suddenly split between the two parties, and the two 
men on the right side are sinking downwards with the smaller half of the rock, which 
is already in a very slanting position. I have not succeded in discovering this legend • 
but there is a story of a Eaja named Ghetiya, who is saddled with the ill repute of 
having told the first lie ever spoken in the world, which illustrates the chief point in 
this scene, and which may possibly be a different version of the same legend.® " When 
" GMtiya, the son of Upachara, began to reign, he appointed as his principal minister 

1 See Plate XLIII. fig. 4, and Plate Lm., Copings HI. 10, for the inscription. 

2 See Plate XLVII. fig. 7, and Plate LIII., Copings II. 4, for the inscription. 
? See Plate XLVIII, fig. 6, and Plate LIII., Copings III., for the inscription. 

■ See Plate XLVifig. 9, and Plate LIII., Copings VIII. 21, for the inscription. 
B Hardy, Manual of Buddhism, p. 128, 


" Korakatamba, with whom lie had been brought up, like two students attending the 
" same schools, saying that he was senior to Kapila his elder brother. This was the 
" first untruth ever uttered amongst men, and when the citizens were informed that the 
" king had told a lie, they inquired what colour it was, whether it was white, or black, 
" or blue. Notwithstanding the entreaties of Kapila, the king persisted in the untruth, 
" and in consequence his person lost its glorious appearance, the earth opened, and he went 
" to hell, the city in which he resided being destroyed." The version here given appears 
to belong to the Ghetvya Jdtaka. 

In the Bharhut Sculpture perhaps the point of the story may have been the first 
occurrence of cheating, and the consequent punishment of the offender. The two figures, 
who are apparently descending into heU along with the sinking rock, would be the party 
guilty of cheating, while the principal figure of the opposite party, who still remains 
seated on the main rock looking on with wonder and amazement, would be Buddha 
himself in a previous existence. 

6. Bajcb JanaJca and Sivald Devi. — In [this scene there are three figures, each with a 
label overhead giving the name. The chief figure is of a royal personage seated to the 
left, and before him stand two others, a male and a female.^ The name of the seated 
figure on the left is lost, but the first letter would appear to have been U, or perhaps B. 
The name in the middle is JcmaTco Baja, and that to the right Sivald Devi. 

In Burma this story of Janaka is included amongst the JdtaJcas, but it] does not 
occur, under this name at least, in the list of Ceylonese Jatakas furnished to me by 
Subhuti. This legend is given by Bishop Bigandet,^ from which I have taken the 
following brief outline. When Arita Janaka, Raja of Alithita, was slain in battle, his 
queen, who was with child, took refuge in Champa, where she gave birth to a beautiful 
child resembling a statue of gold, to whom was given the name of Ja/nalm. When grown 
up Janaka devoted himself to trade, that he might obtain the means of returning to his 
native country. When at sea on his way to Kamawatara his ship was wrecked, but he 
was saved by a daughter of the Devas, who taking him in her arms carried him to Mithila 
and placed him on the table stone of his ancestors. Here he fell asleep. On that very 
day his uncle the Raja of Mithila had died, leaving an only daughter named Sivali. 
Before his death the Raja had charged his ministers to select for the husband of his 
daughter " a man remarkable for beauty and strength, as well as for ability." He was to 
be able to bend and unbend an enormous bow, a feat which one thousand could scarcely 
achieve. On the seventh day after the Raja's death the ministers resolved to leave the 
selection of a husband to chance. So " they sent out a charmed chariot " believing that 
its inherent virtue would point out the fortunate man who was to be the husband of the 
princess. Accordingly the chariot proceeded straight towards the stone on which Janaka 
was sleeping. As the.Brahmans perceived on the hands and feet of the stranger unmis- 
takable signs foreshowing his elevation to the royal dignity, Janaka was awoke 
and taken to the palace in the charmed chariot. Here he performed the required feats of 
bending and unbending the great bow, and was "duly united to the beautiful and 
youthful Sivali." 

The Bharhut bas-relief apparently represents this last scene. 

1 See Plate XLIV. fig. 2, and Plate LIIL, Copings Vm., 20, for the inscription. 

* Legend of the Burmese Buddha, 2nd Edit., p. 412, under the title of Dzanecka or Janaka. 


7. There is a long label descriptive of this scene, which I am unable to make out. 
The letters seem plain enough,^ — 

Asaddvadhususdne Sigdla/m/eti. 

In the foreground a man is lying down apparently either dead or asleep, and quite 
unnoticed by three Jaclcals who are watching a female sitting in a tree, to which she is 
clinging with both hands. As the inscription appears to allude to the young girl (Vadhu), 
and the jackals (sigdla) in a cemetery (Susdma), the man lying on the ground is probably 
a corpse. 

The story here represented agrees pretty closely with that of Eama, Eaja of Benares, 
and the Princess Priya, the eldest sister of four Sakya brothers who founded Kapilavastu, 
excepting only the relative positions of the Raja and the Princess, which are exaetly 
reversed. But as the sculpture is certainly older than the Pali books of Ceylon, and as there 
is an indication in the Singhalese account of the story that the Raja was to have lived in 
a cave,^ I accept this as the original version of the legend, which is thus told by Spence 
Hardy : — 

" The queen-mother Priya (of whom we have spoken in connexion with the 
" founding of Kapilavastu), was seized with the disease called Sweta Kushta, or ' white 
" leprosy,' on account of which she was obliged to reside in a separate habitation ; and her 
" whole body became white like the flower of the mountain ebony, Kobalila. This disease 
" was so infectious that even those who merely looked at her might catch it ; and as the 
" princes themselves were in danger of taking the infection, they took her to a forest 
" near a river, at a distance from the city, in a chariot with drawn curtains. A hole was 
" dug of sufficient size to afford every necessary accommodation for the princess. It so 
" happened that Rama, the king of Benares, was seized by the same disorder, and the 
" disease was so malignant in its type that neither the queen nor his concubines could 
" approach him lest they should be defiled. As the king was thus put to shame, he gave 
" the kingdom to his son, and retired into the forest, thinking to die in some lonely cave. 
" After walking about some time he was overcome by hunger, and ate of the root, leaves, 
" fruit, and bark of a certain tree ; but these acted medicinally, and his whole body 
" became free from disease, pure as a statue of gold. He then sought for a proper tree 
" in which to dwell, and seeing a Icohm with a hollow trunk he thought it would be a 
" secure refuge from the tigers. Accordingly he made a ladder sixteen cubits high, by 
" which he ascended the tree, and cutting a hole in the side for a window, he constructed 
" a frame on which to repose, and a small platform on which to cook his food. At night 
" he heard the fearful roaring of wild beasts around ; but his life was supported by the 
" oflPal left by the lions and tigers after they had eaten their prey. One morning a tiger 
" that was prowling about for food came near the place where the princess was con- 
" cealed, and having got the scent of human flesh he scraped with his paw until the 
" earth that covered the cave was removed, when he saw the princess and uttered a loud 
" roar. The princess trembled with fear at the sight of the tiger, and began to cry. As 
" all creatures are afraid of the human cry, the tiger slunk away without doing her any 
" injury. The cry was heard by Rama as well ; and when he went to see from whom it 

1 See Plate XLVII. fig. 9, and Plate LIII., Copings, III. 8, for the inscription. 

2 Hardy's Manual of Buddhism, p. 134, " he gave the kingdom to his son, and retired to the forest, thinking 
to die in some lonely cave." 


proceeded, lie beheld the princess. The king asked who she was, and she said that she 
had been brought there that she might not defile her relatives. Eama then said to her, 
' I am Eama, king of Benares ; our meeting together is like that of the waters of the 
' rain and river ; ascend, therefore, from the cave to the light.' But Priya replied, ' I 
' cannot ascend from the cave ; I am afflicted with the white leprosy.' Then said the 
king, ' I came to the forest on account of the same disease, but was cured by the eating 
' of certain medicinal herbs : in the same way you may be cured ; therefore at once 
' come hither.' To assist her in ascending, Rama made her a ladder, and taking her to 
the tree in which he lived he applied the medicine, and in a little time she was perfectly 
free from disease." 

The king and princess had a numerous family, and became the founders of the city 
of Eoli, in the neighbourhood of Kapilavastu, which was so-called from the Icolom tree in 
which the king (or the princess) had taken refuge. 

8. Dighatapasisise anusdsati, the label inscribed above this scene, seems to refer to the 
well-known Tvrthika apponent of Buddhism named Dirgha-twpasa, or " long penance," 
who was a follower of the famous Nigantha Ndtha, or chief of the Nirgranthas.^ His 
conversion to Buddhism is told at great length by Spence Hardy .^ After holding a 
controversy with Buddha he returned to his master Nigantha Natha, when he was 
surrounded by his disciples, amongst whom was one named Upali. " Nirgrantha Natha 
enquired of Dirgha-tapasa whence he came, and when he told him that he had been 
speaking to Gotama, and repeated the conversation that had taken place, he told 
his disciple that he had answered discreetly. Upali, on hearing what had passed, said 
that he also would go and hold a controversy with Grotama ; ' I will hold him,' said 
he, ' as a man seizes a sheep by its long hair, and it kicks and struggles but cannot 
' get away ; or as a toddy-drawer who takes the reticulated substance he uses to strain 
' his liquor, knocking it on the ground that it may be free from dirt ; or as a flax 
' dresser who takes his flax, soaks it in water for three days, and then tosses it about 
• ' right and left, that it may be suited to his purpose ; or as an elephant sporting in 
' a tank, that sends the water out of his trunk in all directions.' Nigantha Natha said 
it was a matter of little consequence who went to argue with Gotama, as any one 
of them would be able to subdue him. Bvrgha, however, warned Upali of the danger 
he would incur by conversing with Grotama, as he knew his artful method of gaining 
over persons to his opinion ; and though their teacher ridiculed his fears, he thrice 
entreated Upali not to go. The warning was given in vain, as Upali went to the 
Vihara and made obeisance to Buddha," by whom he was soon converted. 

This story has no connexion with the subject of the Bharhut Sculpture, and I have 
quoted it only to show the high position which Dirgha-tapasa held in the Buddhist 
Church. To the left, on a raised platform, is seated the great ascetic, with his long 
matted hair and scanty clothing. In front of him are seated four female disciples, one 
of whom appears to be earnestly addressing the chief, who is replying to her. The label 
inscribed above seems to refer to these females as Rishis. I read it Dighatajoasisise 
anusdsati, which I take to mean " Dirghatapas instructs the female Rishis " (Isise). 

1 See Plate XL VIII. fig. 4 ; and Plate LIIL, Copings II. 3, for inscription. 

2 Manual of Buddhism, pp. 266 to 271. 
H 255. O 


9. Ttis curious scene has a long label inscribed above it which I cannot make out.^ 
To the right are some large rocks, and to the left is an ornamented bag or skin suspended 
from two pegs. In the middle is a man seated in front of the bag, the ends of which 
he holds as if he was in the act of milking. This action seems to be alluded to in the 
label, — 

VadukoJcatha dohati nadode pavate, 

where I read dohati as " milks." Pavate is perhaps the Sanskrit pravritti, a " continuous 
" flow or stream." 

10. In this sculpture we have a companion scene to the last. Here a man is 
receiving both meat and drink from two hands which project from the trunk of a tree.^ 
In one hand is a bowl filled with solid food, and in the other a water vessel with handle 
and spout like a teakettle. The scene is labelled : — 

Jabu nadode pavate. 
I take Jal)u as the equivalent of the Jambu tree, which here perhaps stands for the 
fabulous Jcalpa drum, or " wishing tree " of Indra's heaven, that produced whatever was 
desired. I have since discovered a large sculpture of the hdpa drum, which forms the 
apex of the capital of one of Asoka's pillars in the ruins of Besnagar, at the junction of 
the Bes and Betwanti Elvers. 



1. Plate XL. figs. 2, 3, 4, 5. — I have grouped these four coping panels together, as 
I think it probable that they belong to one continuous story. They are placed together 
on the coping, and they occupy four contiguous panels, contrary to the usual arrangement 
of alternate scenes and ornaments. If, however, these four panels do not present a single 
story, it is quite certain that the two scenes on the left hand belong to one story, and the 
two on the right hand to a second story. 

The first scene on the left shows a tall tree between two women. The woman to the 
left, apparently a servant, is cutting some standing com, while the other to the right, 
her mistress I presume, is seated on the ground beside a large vessel, which is raised 
upon a common earthen Ghula, or fireplace. The purport of the scene seems to be that 
the one woman is cutting corn for the other woman to cook. 

In the next scene to the right, the woman whom I suppose to be the mistress is 
seated on the ground beside a man, both engaged in eating some broad flat cakes 
(Chapdtis?), which are being presented to them by a female servant, who is most probably 
the corn cutter of the first scene. 

In the third scene to the right there are four actors, a man and woman, and a boy 
and girl. In the middle stands a tree, with large garlands hanging on all sides of it. 
The boy and girl are lying on mattrasses spread on the ground. The man and woman 
are standing and bending forward, the former towards the girl and the latter towards the 
boy. Unfortunately, their action is not quite clear. At first I thought that they were 
puUing out the tongues of the children with long pincers ; but I am now rather inclined 
to think that they are administering poison to them with long spoons. 

1 See Plate XL VIII. fig. 9 : and Plate LIII., Copings VIII. 18, for the inscription. 

2 See Plate XLVIII. fig. H ; and Plate LIII., Copings VIIL 19, for the inscription. 


The fourtli scene on the right hand shows two gigantic birds carrying off two dead 
human beings, male and female, by the hair of their heads. I call them dead because 
their bodies are naked, while their arms are hanging idly by their sides. Connecting this 
scene with the previous one, I conjecture that the two bodies which are being carried off 
in this scene are those of the man and woman of the former scene, and that this is their 
punishment for having tortured the children. 

This manner of carrying the dead is noted by Spence Hardy as peculiar to the 
square-faced inhabitants of TJttarakuru.^ When they " die they are wrapped in a fine 
" kind of cloth, procured from the tree, far more exquisite in its fabric than anything 
" ever made by man. As there is no wood of which to form a pyre, they are taken to 
" the cemetery, and there left. There are birds, more powerful than elephants, which 
" convey the bodies to the Yugandha/ra rocks, and as they sometimes let them fall when 
" flying over Jambudwipa, these precious cloths are occasionally fpund by men." 

2. Plate XLI. figs. 1, 3. — I have joined these two scenes together, as the actors are 
the same in both, and the latter scene seems to be the completion of the former. The 
actors are a Rishi carrying two baskets slung from the ends of a Banghi pole, a Shepherd, 
and a Ram. In the first scene the Rishi is seen approaching the Ram, who has already 
begun to incline his head downwards as if intending to butt. The Shepherd is appa- 
rently warning the holy man not to come too near the Ram. The result is seen in the 
second sculpture, where the Rishi is on the ground with his right knee raised to receive 
the Ram's butt. His Banghi load lies behind him, while the Shepherd, with his forefinger 
raised, is apparently addressing him in the familiar formula, " I told you so." 

3. Plate XLI. fig. 5. — Here a man and woman are standing beside a house, engaged in 
earnest conversation. Behind the house another man is seated. There is nothing to 
indicate the nature of the story. But I have a suspicion that the seated figure is Rama, 
and the other two Sita and Lakshana. 

4. Plate XLII. fig. 1. — A Rishi, seated in front of his hut, is engaged in addressing a 
five-headed snake who is coiled up in front of him. I am ignorant of the story. 

5. Plate XLII. fig. 5. — Unfortunately this sculpture is much broken, and the frag- 
ments could not be found . Three Rishis are ' represented flying through the air carrying 
their alms bowls in their left hands. There were probably five of them when the bas- 
relief was complete, as there would be room for two more on the right. Beneath is a 
fire altar, which is the only part now remaining of the lower half of the composition. I 
think it probable that this bas-relief represents the famous ploughing match which 
arrested the progress of five Rishis flying from the South towards the Forth. The story 
is told by Beal as follows : — ^ 

" At this time there happened to be five Rishis flying, by means of their spiritual 
" powers, through the air, possessed of great energies, and thoroughly versed in the 
" Shasters and Vedas. They were going from the South towards the North, and when 
" they arrived just over the Jambu tree in the garden aforesaid, wishing to go onwards, 
" suddenly they found themselves arrested in their course. Then they said one to 
" another, ' How is it that we, who have in former times found no difficulty in flying 
'" ' through space and reaching even beyond Sumeru to the Palace of Yaisravana, and even 
" ' to the City of Arkavanta, and beyond that even to the abode of the Yakshas, yet now 

1 Manual of Buddhism, p. 15. ^ Eomantic History of Buddha, p. 74. 



" ' find our flight impeded in passing over this tree ? By what influence is it that to-day 
" ' we have lost our spiritual power ? ' 

" Then the Rishis, looking downwards, beheld the prince underneath the tree, sitting 
" with his legs crossed, his whole person so bright with glory that they could with 
" difficulty behold him. Then these Rishis began to consider : ' Who can this be ? Is it 
" ' Brahma, Lord of the world 1 or is it Krishna Deva, Lord of the Kama Loka ? or is it 
" ' Sakra ? or is it Vaisravana, the Lord of the Treasuries ? or is it Chandradeva ? or is it 
" ' Suriya Deva ? or is it some Chakravartin Raja ? or is it possible that this is the person 
" ' of a Buddha bom into the world ?" 

At this time the Guardian Deva of the wood addressed the Rishis as follows : — 
" Great Rishis all ! this is not Brahma Deva, Lord of the world, nor Krishna, Lord of 
" the Kama heavens, nor Sakra, nor Vaisravana, Lord of the Treasuries, nor Chandradeva, 
" nor Suriya Deva ; but this is the Prince Royal, called Siddhartha, bom of Suddh6dana 
" Raja, belonging to the Sakya race. The glory which proceeds from one pore of his 
" body is greater by sixteen times than all the glory proceeding from the bodies of all 
" those forenamed Devas ! and on this account your spiritual power of flight failed you 
" as soon as you came above this tree ! " 

6. Plate XLII. fig. 7. — The same three figures seem to be represented in this sculp- 
ture as those described in No. 3. Here the woman and one of the men are standing 
together in a courtyard surrounded on three sides by houses. The woman is holding out 
a flat basket or tray, into which the man is emptying the contents of a round basket. The 
second man is standing outside the house to the right, with his banghi load of two baskets 
placed on the ground. As the arrangement of the houses in this sculpture agrees with 
Valmiki's description of Rama's dwelling-place at Panchavati on the Godavari, we have 
an additional argument in favour of the connexion of this scene with the Ramayna 
legend. " Then Rama showed his brother a beautiful spot facing the river Godavari, and 
" there was a sheet of water near it, as bright as the sun, and frangrant with lilies, and 
" in the distance were high mountains abounding with glens, and vocal with peacocks. 
" In this charming neighbourhood Lakshmana built a large hut on a high floor of earth, 
" with firm posts of bambus wrought together with wicker-work, and he covered it and 
" roofed it with branches of trees, and tied it with strong cords, and thatched it with 
" grass and leaves, and Jie divided it into four rooms."^ 

This division into four rooms I take to be the arrangement of the four rooms or 
separate huts, to form four sides of a square, so as to enclose a courtyard. In early times 
this disposition of the rooms must have been almost universally adopted as a protection 
against wild beasts. 

7. Plate XLII. fig. 9. — In this sculpture there are four men, two seated and two 
standing. The former are dressed in the usual costume of most of the Bharhut figures ; 
but the latter two have peculiar flat caps on their heads, apparently ornamented with 
feathers, and broad collars of large leaves round their necks ; I take these to be foreign 
merchants who have come to deal with the two home merchants that are seated. In front 
of the latter are two baskets and a number of objects which look like elephants' tusks and 
the Chauri tails of the Yak. The two foreign merchants are engaged in close conversa- 
tion, the subject of which we may imagine to be the price of the tusks and Chauri tails. 

1 Wheeler's Rima,yana, pp. 257-58. 


8. Plate XLIII. fig. 6. — TMs scene consists simply of two Elephants moving in opposite 
directions. The animal going to the right is carrying a garland to deposit, either at the 
foot of a Bodhi tree, or at the base of a Stupa. His open mouth shows his fat tongue in 
a very natural manner. 

9. Plate XLIII. fig. 8. — In this scene the actors are a Rishi, a hunter, or a shepherd, 
and an antelope in a forest near the Rishi's hermitage. The antelope is lying down with 
its head stretched out and resting on the ground, apparently as if bound, while the Rishi 
is about to plunge a knife into the back of its neck. The hunter, or whoever the other 
figure may be, has both his forefingers raised as if expostulating with the ascetic, who, 
from his dress, must be a fire worshipper. 

10. Plate XLIV. fig. 4. — Here two men, one standing and one seated, are holding an 
earnest conversation, to which a woman is listening from a circular hole or opening in the 
roof of an adjacent house ; both of the men are speaking together, and enforcing their 
arguments with their upraised forefingers. This scene may perhaps also refer to the 
history of Rama, Sita, and Lakshana. 

11. Plate XLIV. fig. 6. — The subject of this scene is, I think, the well-known story 
of the appearance of the four exiled IJcshwdka princes before the sage Kapila, who gave up 
his residence to them for the site of their new city, which was accordingly named Kapila- 
vastu, or Kaplla-nagara} In the bas-relief the sage is seated with his right shoulder bare, 
and his long hair twisted and coiled into a massive Jatd behind his head after the usual 
manner of ascetics, a fashion which has descended even down to the present time. The four 
princes stand and kneel before him with their hands joined in an attitude of respect. 

As the story of the four exiled princes is intimately connected with the origin of the 
name of Sakya, it has a special interest of its own, irrespective of the curious light which 
it throws on some of the social habits of the people. The following is a brief outline of 
its leading features taken from Spence Hardy's long account : — 

The last Ikshwaku king had five wives and five sons, one by each wife. The mother 
of the youngest, five days after his birth, " arrayed him in a splendid robe, took him to 
" the king, and placing him in his arms told him to admire his beauty. The king on 
" seeing him was much delighted that she had borne him so beautiful a son in his old 
" age, and gave her permission to ask for anything she might desire. She of course 
" asked that her son might be declared heir to the throne, which was then refused." But 
not long afterwards, when the king was talking to her in a pleasant manner, she told 
him that it was wrong for princes to speak untruths, and asked him if he had never 
heard of the monarch who was taken to hell for the utterance of a lie.^ By this 
allusion the king was put to shame. He then sent for his four eldest sons, and told 
them that his youngest son was to be his successor, and that they should take such 
treasures as they required, and as many people as would follow them, and seek another 
place for their abode. The four princes accordingly started from Benaras with a large 
retinue. " "When their five sisters heard of their departure, they thought that there 
" would be no one now to care for them, as their brothers were gone ; so they resolved 
" to follow them, and joined them with such treasures as they could collect." In the 

1 This legend is given by Csoma de Koros in the Bengal Asiatic Society's Journal, Vol. II. p. 390; and by 
Hardy in his Manual of Buddhism, p. 130. 

2 This was king Chetiya, whose story has been already given. 


course of tteir wanderings the princes arrived at tlie hermitage of the sage Kapila, to whom 
they paid due reverence, and when he asked them what they were doing in the forest, 
they told him their history. The sage then offered them the site of his own hermitage 
" for the building of their city, telling them that if even an outcast had been bom 
" there, it would at some future period be honoured by the presence of a chahrwoarti, and 
" that from it a being would proceed who would be an assistance to all the intelligences 
" of the world. No other favour did the sage request in return, but that the princes 
" would call the city by his own name, Kapila."^ It is this interview between Kapila 
and the four exiled princes which seems to me to form the subject of the Bharhut 

" The princes then said to each other, ' If we send to any of the inferior kings to 
" ' ask their daughters in marriage, it will be a dishonour to the Okkaka race ; and if 
" ' we give our sisters to their princes it will be an equal dishonour ; it will therefore 
" ' be better to stain the purity of our relationship than that of our race ! ' The eldest 
" sister (named Priya) was therefore appointed as the queen mother, and each of the 
" brothers took one of the other sisters as his wife." In the Tibetan version it is 
specially noted that the sisters also had different mothers, and that each of the brothers 
accordingly selected his half sister. In the course of time each of the queens had eight 
sons and eight daughters, " When their father heard in what manner the princes had acted, 
" he thrice exclaimed, ' Salcd wata hho rdjaJcv/mdra, paramd Baled wata bho rdjahv/mdrdye,' 
" ' The princes are skilful in preserving the purity of our race, the princes are exceedingly 
" ' skilful in preserving the purity of our race.' On account of this exclamation of the 
" king, the Okkaka race was henceforth called Ambatta-Sdhya." 

In the Tibetan account, when the king is informed that his four sons have " taken 
" their sisters for their wives, and have been much multiplied, he is much surprised, and 
" exclaims several times, ' Shdkya, Shdhya,' ' Is it possible, is it possible,' or, ' O daring ! 
" ' daring ! ' and this is the origin of the Shikya name." 

12. Plate XLIY. fig. 8. — The subject of this bas-relief is the reverence paid by a 
herd of Deer to a Bodhi tree, with the Bodhimanda, or Throne of Buddha, placed beneath 
it. There is nothing specially remarkable in the sculpture except that the animals are all 
spotted Deer. 

13. Plate XLV. fig. 3. — This scene is in perfect order, but at present I see no clue to 
its identification. A sage, with his right shoulder bare, is seated on a morha with his 
right leg raised, in the Indian fashion, and his left foot resting on a^ footstool. In the 
middle stands a female, who is apparently arguing with the sage, as both have their 
right forefingers raised as if addressing each other. To the right a female is leaving the 
scene. There is nothing to attract special attention in this sculpture, save perhaps the 
simple dressing of the women's hair, which is merely combed down the back of the head 
and fastened in a knot behind the neck. 

14. Plate XLY. fig. 5. — In this scene there are a man and two monkeys in the midst 
of a forest. One of the monkeys is carrying away a pair of water vessels slung from the 
ends of a Banghi pole. The other monkey is seated on the ground in front of the man, 
who is standing, and apparently addressing him. The action of the seated monkey is 
not quite clear. He holds some indistinct object in his hands, which I at first took to be 
a net. 

1 Hardy, Manual of Buddhism, p. 133. 


15. Plate XLV. fig. 7. — The only actors in this scene are a pair of birds, like Doves, 
■which are represented sitting on two different walls and apparently conversing. Between 
them is the round gable end of a house, to the right of which is a lower house with a 
door in the outer wall, and in the background a row of houses with a second round gable 
end. The subject of this bas-relief is quite unknown to me, but I have no doubt that it 
represents some well-known Buddhist story. 

16. Plate XL VI. fig. 4. — This sculpture has probably some connexion with the scene 
represented in No. 10. The same two men and the same woman here appear standing 
before a seated ascetic. Behind the Rishi is his hermitage. The men are standing in a 
respectful attitude with their hands crossed on their breasts, while the woman is eagerly 
listening to the words of the sage, who is addressing them with his forefinger raised. It 
is possible that these two scenes may represent some well-known Buddhist legend ; but I 
have a strong suspicion that they are connected with the story of the wanderings of Rama, 
Lakshana,^ and' Sita. The present scene, for instance, in spite of the difference of dress, 
may perhaps be intended to picture the arrival of Rama, Sita, and Lakshana, at the 
hermitage of the sage Bharadwaja, near the junction of the Ganges and Jumna at 
Prayaga, or at that of Valmiki near Chitrakuta. In the Ramayana, the two brothers 
are represented as having assumed the bark dress and the matted hair of the ascetics 
before they left Ayodhya. If this early assumption of the ascetic dress really formed 
part of the original story of Rama, then these Bharhut Sculptures cannot have been 
intended for illustrations of the Ramayana legend. But as both of the brothers are said 
to have been armed with swords and shields as well as with bows and arrows, there would 
seem to be some diflS.culty about the assumption of the ascetic's dress. Their dwelling is 
described as made of branches of trees and roofed with leaves. " It was adorned with a 
" large bow covered with gold, resembling the bow of Indra, and with a large quiver of 
" arrows, as bright as the rays of the sun, and as keen as the faces of the serpents in the 
" river Bhagavati. This hermitage^ * * was likewise adorned with two cimitars wrapped 
" in cloth of gold, and with two shields which were studded with gold, and the guards for 
" the arms and the fingers were also covered with gold."^ Now as all the real ascetics, 
such as Bharadwaja, Sutikshna, and Agastya, are described as being quite unarmed, it 
seems most probable that in the original story the two royal brothers were represented 
as simple exiles who carried their arms, and not as armed ascetics. For this reason I 
am tempted to suggest the possible connexion of these scenes with the Ramayana legend. 

Two other scenes of the same story are probably represented in Nos. 3, 6, and 10, 
which have been noticed already. That the story of Rama was a popular one even in 
the early Buddhist times we learn from Spence Hardy's quotation from the Singhalese 
Amawatura.* "This is just like the teaching of Tirthakas, a thing without benefit, 
" as useless as the tales called Bharata and Bdma, like the seeking for hard wood in the 
" plaintain, or rice in mere chaff." 

17. Plate XL VI. fig. 6. — In this scene the actors are three Elephants in a Bambu 
forest. Apparently they are simply feeding on the Bambus ; but their attitudes are very 
spirited, more particularly that of the animal on the left, who is represented in a threey 
quarter front view, with his great ears spread out, and with a bambu branch grasped 
in his upraised trunk. 

1 This is the Buddhist form of the name of Rama's brother Lakshmana. 
2 Wheeler's Ram%ana, pp. 126-127, 204. 3 Manual of Buddhism, p. 271. 



The only scenes of humour amongst the Bharhut Sculptures are devoted to the 
actions of monkeys in contact with men and elephants. The few scenes of this kind are 
brought together in a separate Plate, for the sake of ready comparison with one another. 
Two of the scenes represent the capture of an elephant by monkeys, who lead him along 
in a sort of triumphal procession. 

Scene 1? — In this medallion four monkeys are employed in dragging along a captive 
elephant, who is carefully secured by stout ropes from doing any mischief. A billet of 
wood is fastened along the back of his trunk to -restrain its action, while a rope tied to 
his tail is carried between his legs and passed round the root of his trunk. The leading 
monkey in front of the elephant has the end of the rope over his right arm, while he 
shoulders the aniens, or elephant goad, which is grasped with both hands. Three other 
monkeys drag separate ropes which are passed over their shoulders after the fashion of 
boatmen in towing a boat. From the end of the last monkey's rope hang the two beUs, 
which had formerly dangled from the elephant's sides. In front of all are two monkey 
musicians, one playing a drum which is suspended from his neck, and the other sounding 
a shell which is attached to the end of a long pipe. 

Scene 2? — Eepresents the same story in a more advanced stage. The elephant is still 
seen marching along, but he is no longer dragged by his monkey captors, who, with the 
exception of the musicians, have all mounted on his back. The leading monkey with the 
aniens is now seated on the animal's neck, and is driving the goad with both hands into 
the back of his head. A second monkey stands on one of the elephant's tusks, facing the 
driver, whom he is energetically addressing. Two other monkeys are seated behind the 
driver, whilst a fifth holds on by his hands to the rope passing under the elephant's tail 
and fixes his feet on the animal's rump after the very common fashion of an elephant 
coolee. The drummer still trudges in front and the shell-blower alongside, but a third 
monkey has joined the musicians as a player of cymbals. 

These two scenes are no doubt the work of the same sculptor, as they occupy the 
two opposite faces of the same Rail bar in the S.W. quadrant. Both designs are con- 
ceived with much spirit, but the workmanship is not equal to the intention. The left 
hind leg of each elephant is faulty, and there is too much sameness in the attitudes of 
the monkeys in the first scene. This was probably noticed by some of the artist's friends, 
as in the second scene all the five monkeys on the elephant's back are in dififerent 
attitudes, and what is more, every one of the attitudes is a natural one. This attention 
to nature as well as to art in varying the attitudes shows that the old Indian sculptor had 
at least some of the instincts of a true artist. 

Scens 3. — Is another circular medallion representing an elephant and monkeys, but 
with the addition of a giant, who is the principal figure in the composition.* I call the 
human figure a giant because he is just twice the height of the elephant. The giant is 
seated on a low-backed chair, with his feet on a footstool. He has the usual royal head- 
dress, earrings, bracelets, and necklace, and is naked as far as the waist. His right arm 
hangs straight down by his side, but his left is extended towards a monkey seated on a 

1 See Plate XXXIII. fig. 1, EaU bar of S.W. quadrant. 

2 See Plate XXXIII. fig. 2, Rail bar of S.W. quadrant. 

3 See Plate XXXIII. fig. 3, from No. XV. Pillar, S.W. quadrant. 


low stool in front, with the palm of the hand turned upwards, which the monkey is either 
cutting or pricking with a short pointed tool. A second monkey is pulling out one of 
the giant's teeth with a large forceps, which is secured to an elephant by a long rope. 
A third monkey is driving the goad into the back of the elephant's head to make him 
go quickly, whilst a fourth monkey is biting the animal's tail and beating him with a 
stick for the same purpose. Above there is a fifth monkey playing a drum, and below 
there is a sixth blowing a very large shell. 

It is possible that this scene represents some well-known story with which I am not 
acquainted. From the stiff position of the giant I conclude that he is bound to his seat, 
but the cords are not apparent, unless the band round his stomach, which looks more 
like the usual girdle, should be a rope. Perhaps also the loose thick band round his 
neck, which looks very like a long necklace, may be another rope. There is much less 
spirit in this scene, than in those of the Captured Elephant just described. The same 
monkeys figure over again, but with less action, and the general effect is comparatively 
tame. The best figure is that of the monkey, who is piercing or cutting the giant's 
hand. His fixed and grave expression is certainly good ; while his attitude, with the 
legs drawn in and resting on the toes, marks his eager attention to the work in hand. 
The figure of the giant is badly drawn, and his supine listlessness is suggestive rather of 
having his nose tickled than of having a tooth violently tugged by a forceps worked 
by an elephant. But there can be little doubt that ignorance of the story must take 
away much of the interest of this curious sculpture. 

Scene 4 represents a fight between men and monkeys.^ Unfortunately the whole 
of the lower half of this spirited scene is lost, and the only figures that now remain are 
those of two men and three monkeys. To the right a man is hurling a large stone at a 
monkey who clasps him by the legs. In the middle a monkey is trying to escape up a 
tree from a man who clings tenaciously to his back. The third monkey is lying along 
the branch of a tree, with his head facing downwards. His opponent is lost. The 
whole of these figures are very spirited both in design and in execution. 

SceTie 5 is of a peaceful kind, containing a row of trees, with one man and two 
monkeys.^ The man stands on the left, with both hands raised, and forefingers elevated, 
and is evidently speaking earnestly to one of the monkeys who is seated on the ground, 
engaged in working a net, or some other object, with both hands. The second monkey 
is carrying off a pair of round vessels (gharas) fastened to the ends of a pole in Banghi 
fashion. No doubt this scene also represents some well-known story. 

Scene 6 presents a tree filled with monkeys, with a man and monkey below seated 
on stools facing each other.^ The man is evidently speaking, as his right hand is raised 
towards the monkey, who sits all attention, leaning slightly forward with both hands 
resting on his knees. Behind them stand two men who are holding out a rectangular 
object between them, which may perhaps be a mat to catch fruit falling from the tree. 
The monkeys are represented in various ways, as climbing, sitting, jumping, and eating 
the fruit of the tree. The bust of a man appears between the two seated figures with 
his hands crossed on his breast. A portion of the medallion on the left hand has been 

2 See Plate XXXIII. fig. 5, from a coping stone. ^ See Plate XLV. fig. 5, from a coping stone. 

2 See Plate XXXIII. fig. 4, from a pillar. 
H 255. p 


broken off, but not much, is lost. The story of this animated scene is also unknown to 
me, but I suspect that it represents the interview between Rama and S.ugriva, king of 
the monkeys. 

To complete the series of monkey scenes I have added two small pieces, one of 
which represents a monkey seated on the bough of a mango tree, eating a fruit, and 
the other a monkey who has turned ascetic, and is seen sitting on a stool outside his 
hermitage.^ This may be Sugriva himself. 

To this short account I may add a notice of a single scene of grim humour, in which 
monkeys take no part. This is sculptured on a round medallion, which has been re- 
moved to Uchahara, where I found it buried under the walls of the fort. It represents 
a great marine monster, with mouth wide open, in the act of swallowing a boat with 
its crew of three men. A second boat is drifting towards the same fate stern foremost, 
while her crew of three men have given up rowing, in despair.^ The waves are rough, 
and several small fishes appear between the sea monster and the second boat. This 
bas-relief is valuable as being the only Bharhut Sculpture which presents us with the 
view of the ancient Indian boat. Here we have two boats, with their zigzag-cut planks 
fastened by iron cramps, just like those of the present day. The oars also and rudder 
are the same as those now in use, the former being made of a simple bambu with a piece 
of flat wood tied to the end for a blade. The men in the second boat who have given up 
rowing have placed their right hands on their breasts, a mode of action which was 
probably understood to signify despair. The head of the leviathan is particularly stiff 
and clumsy, but as the animal has to swallow a boat the mouth is necessarily large. 
Altogether this is a very curious and interesting piece of sculpture. 


In the Bharhut Sculptures there is no trace of any Image worship, the only objects 
of reverence being Stupas, Wheels, Bodhi Trees, Buddha-padas, or " Footprints," and the 
symbol of the Triratna, or " Triple-gem." In the pillar inscriptions of Asoka the 
Aswatha, or Pippal Tree, which was the Bodhi Tree of Sakya Muni, is alone mentioned,* 
and in the contemporary sculptures of Bharhut the Naga Raja Brapatra pays his devo- 
tions to Buddha by kneeling with joined hands at the foot of the Sacred Tree. The bas- 
reliefs on the Buddhist Railings at Buddha-Gaya, which are also contemporary works, 
agree with those of Bharhut in making \ the Bodhi Tree, the Stupa, and the Wheel the 
three great objects of Buddhist reverence.* In the edicts of Asoka veneration for the 
Holy Fig-tree {Aswatha) is strongly inculcated, and both benefit and pleasure are promised 
to the people who make offerings to it. But there is no mention of" either Simrpas or 

According to a Buddhist legend, quoted by Spenoe Hardy,® Gotama Buddha declared 
to Ananda that the objects proper to be worshipped are of three kinds : 1. Sarmka; 

1 See Plate XXXIII. figs. 6 and 7. 2 See Plate XXXIV. flg. 2. 

* Journal Asiatic Society of Bengal VI. p. 585 ; James Prinsep's Translation of the west edict on the Delhi- 
Siwalik Pillar. 

* See Archaeological Survey of India, Vol. I. Plate IX., where all of these objects are shown. 
6 Eastern Monachism, pp. 212-216. 


2. Uddesilca ; 3. Pomhhogilca. The first class consists of bodily relics of Buddha, such as 
hemes after burning, and also cuttings of hair and miils. " The second," according to 
Spence Hardy, " includes those things that have been erected on his account, or for his 
" sake, which the commentators say mean the mages of his person," but which in ancient 
times would appear to have been limited to Stupas, Wheels, and Tri-Batnas, or " Triple- 
Gem Symbols." The third class includes the personal possessions of a Buddha, such as 
his girdle, his alms-bowl, his hathmg-robe, his drmUng vessel, and his seat or throne. In this 
last class are included the Bodhi Trees of the different Buddhas. 

The worship of the Bodhi Tree was specially enjoined by Sakya Muni himself, who 
directed Ananda to obtain a branch of the tree under which he had obtained Buddhahood, 
and to plant it in the court of the Vihara at Sravasti ; adding that " he who worships it 
" will receive the same reward as if he worshipped me in person."^ Such being the 
recorded origin of the reverence paid to the Pippal Tree of the last Buddha Sikya 
Sinha, it is not surprising that Tree worship was generally popular. In the Divya 
Avadana it is related that the Bodhi Tree was the favourite object of Asoka's worship ;^ 
and in the Bharhut Sculptures we find that the N^ga Eaja pays his adorations to Buddha 
(Bhagavat) by kneeling down, with joined hands and bowed head, before the Sacred Tree. 
In none of the many sculptured scenes at Bharhut and Buddha-Graya, all of which are 
contemporary with Asoka, is there any representation of Buddha himself. Even in the 
much later sculptures of S&nchi, which date from the end of the first century A.D., there 
is no representation of Buddha, and the sole objects of reverence are Stupas, Wheels, and 
Trees. But it is quite certain that figures of Buddha had already been introduced as early 
as the first century B.C., as he is portrayed on some of the coins of Kanishka both sitting 
and standing with his right hand upraised in the act of " turning the wheel of the Law."^ 
My excavations at Mathura also have brought to light many stone statues of the same 
age, both Jain and Buddhist, which were set up in the first century B.C., during the 
reigns of the Indo-Scythian princes Kanishka, Huvishka, and Vasu Deva.* The numerous 
sculptures of the Indo-Scythian period also abound in figures of Buddha, who is every- 
where represented as an object of worship with a halo round his head. As the attitudes and 
general treatment of the latter Indian statues agree with those of the Indo-Scythian 
Sculptures, I conclude that the practice of worshipping images of Buddha must have been 
introduced into India from the Panjab, where it had no doubt been originated by the 
semi-Grreek population. 

The preference for the Bodhi Tree over the other Paribhogika objects of reverence, 
such as the girdle, alms-bowl, &o., would appear to have been chiefly due to its capacity 
of being multiplied, so that it was possible for all great kings and great cities to become 
possessors of scions of the holy tree, while the possession of the alms-bowl, the girdle, or 
any other specimen of personal property, must have been limited to one proprietor only. 
I believe also that the preference was partly due to the more decidedly marked distinc- 
tions between the Bodhi Trees of the different Buddhas, than between their alms-bowls, and 

1 Hardy's Eastern Monachism, p. 212.. 

2 Burnouf, Introduction a I'Histoire du Buddhisme Indien. 

3 See Journal of Bengal Asiatic Society, Vol. III. Plate XXV. fig. 11, and Vol. XIV. p. 438, and Plate II. 
fig. 6, for the seated Buddha. See also Ariana Antiqua, Plate XIII. figs. 1, 2, and 3. The inscription is 
Baga * * Saka M * * which may be read with some certainty as Bhagavata Saka Muni. 

* See Archasological Survey of India, Vol. III. pp. 30 to 34 of Mathura inscriptions. 

P 2 


girdles, and other personal possessions.'^ Each Buddha had his own separate Bodhi Tree ; 
those of the last seven Buddhas being the following : 

Vipaswi - - - Pdtali Tree, or Bignonia Suaveolens. 

Sikhi, or Sikin - - Pmidarika, or White Lotus. 

Viswabhu - - - Sdla, or Shorea robusta. 

Krakuchhanda - - Sirisa, or Acacia. 

Kanaka Muni - - TJdmmhara, or Ficus Glomerata. 

K4syapa _ - - Nyagrodha, or Ficus Indica. 

SS,kya Muni - - Pippala, or Ficus Eeligiosa.^ 

In the Bharhut Sculptures the Bodhi Trees belonging to six out of these seven 
Buddhas have been found, with the names attached to them, the missing name being 
that of Sikin. But there can be little doubt that his Bodhi Tree was also amongst the 
sculptures of the lost part of the Railing. 

A reverence for certain trees has been held by the people of India from time 
immemorial. The oldest Hindu coins bear representations of holy Trees surrounded by 
railings ; and on one coin we have the names of the two principal Trees, the Banian and 
the Pippal, joined together as Vataswaka, or the Vata and the Aswatha. The veneration 
for trees was noticed by the companions of Alexander, from whom Q. Curtius derived 
the fact that the Indians "reputed as gods whatever they held in reverence, especially 
" Trees, which it was death to injure."^ In the story of the Nyagrodha Tree at Benares, 
by Mr. Beal, there is a very curious illustration of the antiquity of Tree worship.* " This 
" Tree was an object of veneration to all the people," &c. 

According to Spence Hardy, all the different objects of Buddhist reverence were 
called Ghaityas, " on account of the satisfaction or pleasure which they produce in the 
" mind of those by whom they are properly regarded."^ But in the Bharhut Sculptures 
this term, in its Pali form of Ghetiya, would seem to be confined to holy Trees, as in the 
only two instances in which it occurs, a Tree is the object of worship over which it is 
labelled.® Colebrooke translates the word as an " altar," but adds in a note that some 
interpret it as " a monument of wood or other materials placed in honour of a deceased 
" person." "Wilson calls it a, " sacred tree ; a place of sacrifice or religious worship, an 
" altar, &c., a monument," &c. While Turnour makes it " an object of worship, whether 
" an image, a tree, an edifice, or a mountain."^ As the word is derived from the root 
Chit, to think, or meditate, it would seem to include every object of veneration and 
worship, whether a bodily relic, such as a bone, or tooth ; a personal possession, such as 
a bowl, or a Bodhi Tree ; or a monument, such as a Stupa, a Wheel, or an image. That 
Ohaityas were in existence before the time of Sakya Muni, we learn from his own mouth, 

1 The difference between the Banian Tree of Kasyapa and the Pippal Tree of Sakya Muni was patent to 
every one, while the difference between their alms-bowls, or other personal possessions, was most probably very 

2 Tumour's Mahawanso, Introduction, p. XXX. ii. 

3 Vit. Alexand. Mag. "VIII. 9. " Deos putant, quidquid colere ceperunt ; arbores maxime, quas violare 
capital est." 

* Eomantic History of Buddha, p. 258. ^ Manual of Buddhism, p. 217. 

6 See Plate XLIII. flg. 4, and XLVIII. fig. 6. 

7 Colebrooke's Amara Kosha ; in voce Chaitya. Wilson's Sanskrit Dictionary in voce. Tumour's Maha- 
wanso, Index in voce. 


as lie directed the people of Vaisali " to maintain, respect, reverence, and make oflferings 
" to the Ghaityas, and to keep up the ancient offerings without diminution."'- 

Eegarding the worship of Trees Mr. Beal makes the following judicious remarks, " I 
" would observe, however, that the worship is not offered to the Tree, as if it were the 
" residence of a Tree-Deva, or Dryad, but simply as it suggests an association of mind 
" with the complete emancipation of Buddha beneath its shade ; hence, it will be seen, 
" the Diamond Seat, or throne beneath the Tree, is a joint object of adoration. So again 
" we see Devas and men rendering worship to the same objects, the throne being 
" distinguished by the presence of the sacred symbol of the Mani, or threefold gem, 
" indicating the all-supreme Buddha." 

I. — Saririka, or Bodily Relics. 

1. Ghuda MaM, or " Great Headdress," more usually known as Ghuda Mani, or the 
" Head Ornament," which comprised the hair as well as the headdress of Prince 
Siddhartha. This precious relic is thus described :^ "Onefold of the turban appeared 
" like one thousand, and ten folds like ten thousand folds, offering the magical coup-d'ceil 
" of as many different pieces of cloth, arranged with the most consummate skill. The 
" extremity of the turban, which crossed vertically the whole breadth of the countless 
" folds, appeared covered with a profusion of shining rubies. The head of Siddhartha 
" was small, but the folds of the turban seemed numberless." "When the prince had 
reached the opposite bank of the Anauma River, he cut off his hair with a single stroke 
of his sword, and holding his hair and headdress together, he exclaimed, " If I am 
" destined to become a Buddha let my hair and headdress remain suspended in the air ; 
" if not, let them fall to the ground."' The relic was at once seized by a Deva, who 
carried it up to the Trayastrinshas heavens, where a building was erected over it called 
Dzedi Dzula Mani, (Chaitya-Chuda Mani). This famous relic is faithfully represented in 
one of the Bharhut Sculptures, on a corner Pillar of the "West Gateway.* To the right 
there is the palace of the Devas, which is duly labelled Vijayanta Pasdde, or the " Palace 
of Victory," which was the actual name of the building in the Trayastrinshas heavens, 
in which the Devas were said to live. Beside the palace there is a domed temple, 
enshrining the Headdress Relic, which is the exact counterpart of the headdresses worn 
by all royal personages in the Bharhut Sculptures. This building is also duly labelled 
" SudJiammd Deva Sabha Bhagavato Ghuda-MaTio," or the " Head ornament of Buddha in the 
" holy assembly of the Devas." Below these the Apsarases, or Heavenly Nymphs, are 
represented dancing and singing in honour of the holy relic. 

The building itself which enshrines the relic would appear to be square, with a 
domed roof supported on pillars. In the middle of the front there is a projection like a 
portico, with an arched roof, and a semicircular hood moulding. But the great 
peculiarity of this building is that the roof is formed by two domes, one over the other, 
exactly in the same manner as those of the chapels and the other Buddhist buildings at 
Takhti-Bahi and Jamal-garhi in the Yusafzai district. The lower dome is quite flat on 
the top, from which rises a low cylindrical neck supporting a hemispherical dome, which 

1 Turnour, in Bengal Asiatic Society Journal, VII. 994. 

2 Bigandet, Legend of the Burmese Buddha, p. 52. 63. 

3 Ibid., p. 60. * See Plate XVI., upper bas-relief. 


overlaps tlie neck all round. By this arrangement, the under dome forms a flat ceiling 
to the lower storey, and a level floor to the upper storey, like those of the Buddhist 
buildings in the Yusafzai district. 

II. — Uddesika, or Monuments. 

1. SltPAS. 

A Stupa was originally only a mound of earth, or a pile of stones, heaped up over a 
dead body as a memorial monument, such as the great barrows at Lauriya to the north 
of Bettiah. But the Stupa of the Buddhists was a structural monument of stone or 
brick, raised to enshrine the bodily relics of a Buddha, or of some holy Arhat, or of a 
Ohahra-vartti-Bdjd, or- powerful king. Thus in his last injunctions to his disciple 
Ananda, Buddha dwelt " on the merits to be acquired by building thupa over relics of 
" Tathdgata, Pdchs Buddha, and Sdwaha, or Buddhas Pratyekas, and 8rdwakas; and he 
more particularly pointed out that they who prayed at the shrines that would be raised 
to him would be born in heaven. On another occasion he informed Ananda that over 
the remains of a Ohahravwrtti Eaja " they built the thwpo at a spot where four principal 
roads meet."-^ 

The 8tupas represented in the Bharhut Sculptures are masonry structures of the 
same form, and are adorned with the same amount of umbrellas and garlands, as those 
in the bas-reliefs of the Sanchi Tope. One of these Stiipas is shown in the accom- 
panying Plate.^ There are three or four other representations of similar Stupas, of 
which one only has the Buddhist Railing surrounding the base. In the specimen given 
in the plate two streamers are shown hanging from the edge of the umbrella. Two 
large flowers spring from the top of the square pedestal on which the umbrella rests, 
and two others from its base. The dome itsehc is ornamented with a long undulated 
garland suspended in loops from pegs. These garlands are still used in Burma, where 
they are made of coarse flowered or figured muslins, in the shape of long cylinders or 
pipes extended by rings of bambu. I have seen them of all sizes from 30 and 40 to 200 
feet in length, and from 6 inches to 2 feet in diameter. They are carried in processions 
on holy days by numerous bearers, and are eventually hung up on pegs around the 
Stupa, exactly as shown in the Bharhut Sculpture, or are suspended from holy Trees or 
pillars in the courtyard of the Stupa. 

2. Wheels. 
Of the Wheel symbol I observed only three specimens amongst the Bharhut Sculp- 
tures ; but one of these is of special value, as it is labelled Bhagavato dhamvma Ohaham,^ 
or " Wheel of the Law of Buddha." It is placed inside a temple as an object of worship 
and is surmounted by an umbrella, and adorned with garlands. Beneath, in a four-horse 
chariot, the great Eaja Prasenajit is approaching to pay his respects to the holy Symbol. 

1 Tournour's in Bengal Asiatic Society, Journal, VII. 1006. 

2 See Plate XIII., side bas-relief, and Plate XXXI. fig. 1, for two highly decorated representations of Stupas 

3 Plate XIII., to right. At the foot of this sculpture there is another bas-relief, but unfortunately broken 
■which represents the famous Raja Prasenajita in a four-horse chariot. See Plate XXXI. 2, and Plate 
XXIV. 4. 


The inscription attached to this scene is of unusual interest, as it gives the name of 
Prasenajita, the great king of Sravasti, who was a contemporary of S^kya Muni. The 
inscription reads simply, " Baja Pasenaji Kosalo." Kow we learn from the Chinese 
pilgrim Hwen Thsang that Prasenajit had built a great " Salle de la loi " for the use of 
Buddha.^ The original Indian name of this building must have been either Pwnya Sola, 
or Dharmma Sola. 

The earlier pilgrim Fa Hian ^ also records that Prasenajit, during Buddha's absence 
in the Trayastrinshas heavens, set up an image of him in sandal wood on the throne of 
the Vihar, which Buddha usually occupied. But as we have already seen that images 
of Buddha were not known in India in the time of Asoka, nor even down to a much 
later period, I think it nearly certain that the object which Prasenajita set up was the 
Dharmma Ghakra, or |Smybol of Buddha as the turner of the "Wheel of the Law." In 
after times an image would have been added, which would have supplanted the old 
Symbol of the "Wheel. At any rate there can be no doubt about the object which 
appears in this representation of Prasenajita's Pimya Sola being the Dharmma Ghakra, or 
" Wheel of the Law," as this title is engraved on the roof of the Vihara or Temple which 
enshrines it. 

A second specimen of the same Symbol is shown in the accompanying Plate as 
occupying the summit of a pillar.^ This was also a favourite design with the ancient 
Buddhists, as a similar representation is found both at Buddha G-aya, and at Sanchi, 
whilst a pillar surmounted by a wheel was actually standing at Sravasti at the time of 
Fa Hian's visit in the early part of the fifth century. In the present instance the 
Symbol is being worshipped by both men and women who are standing before it. 

3. Tri-Eatna Symbol. 

The principal Buddhist Symbol is the Tri-Eatna, or " Triple Grem " Symbol, which 
is found in all the countries wherever Buddhism has prevailed. Mr. Beal calls this " the 
" sacred Symbol of the Mani, or threefold gem, indicating the all supreme Buddha ;" 
and in another place he describes the Symbol as " the triple object of their veneration, 
Buddha, the Law, and the Church." * This triple Symbol was a very favourite form of 
ornament for the pinnacle of a gateway, or the earrings of a lady, and for the point of 
a military standard, or the centre piece of a necklace.^ In the Bharhut Sculptures the 
Tri-Eatna Symbol is placed above the thrones of the Buddhas Yiswabhu, and Sakya 


Considerable interest attaches to this Symbol of the Tri-ratna, as there can be no 
reasonable doubt that the three rude figures of Jagannath, and his sister, and brother, 
now worshipped with so much fervour in Orissa, have been directly derived from three 
of these Symbols. I was first led to this opinion ia 1851, by the discovery of three of 
these Symbols set up together in one of the Sanchi Sculptures.'^ Since then I have found 
that these same three rude Jagannath figures are used in all the Native Almanacs of 

1 Julien's Hwen Thsang, II. 294. I ^ See Plate XXXIV. fig. 4. 

a Beal's Fa Hian, pp. 75-76. I * Catena of Buddhist Scriptures, pp. 147-49. 

6 See Bhilsa Topes, Plate XXXIL, for examples of ornamentation. 

6 See Plate XXIX. and Plate XIII., left-hand bas-relief. 

7 See Bhilsa Topes, Plate XXXIII. figs. 22 and 23. 


Mathura and Banaras as the representative of Buddha in the Buddha Avatslra of Vishnu, 
This last fact seems to me to be conclusive ; but I may add that the Jagannath figure in 
Orissa is universally believed to contain a hone of Krishna} But as Brahmans do not 
worship the relics of their gods, I conclude that this bone must bfe a relic of Buddha, 
and that the rude figure of Jagannath in -which it is contained is one of the old Tri 
Batnas, or " Triple-gem " Symbols, of the Buddhist Triad. The able reviewer of Mr. 
Fergusson's " Tree and Serpent Worship " remarks that " one of Greneral Cunningham's 
" happiest hits is his derivation of the three fetish-like figures of Jagannath and his sister 
" and brother, from three of the combined emblems of the Buddhist Trinity, placed side 
" by side as at Sanchi."^ " The resemblance," he adds, " is rude but unmistakable." 

III. — Paeibhogika, or " Personal Possessions." 

1. Thrones. 
The throne' of each Buddha is represented under his Bodhi Tree, and the thrones 
of the last four Buddhas, which are often mentioned by the Chinese pilgrims are joined 
together in a single bas-relief on one of the Railing bars.* Sakya Muni's throne will 
also be found in the sculpture representing the Naga Elapatra's worship of Buddha, and 
in the bas-relief representing the visit of Ajatasatru.* In nearly every instance the 
throne is covered by an umbrella, with garlands hanging from its edge. The Vajrasan 
or Diamond Throne of Sakya Muni still exists under the Pipal Tree at Bodh Gaya ; but 
it has been so altered by repeated repairs, that it no longer represents a seat, but simply 
a series of steps surrounding the Tree. 

2. Buddha-Pad, or " Footprints " of Buddha. 

The Buddha-pad, or " Footprints of Buddha," was most probably an object of reve- 
rence from a very early period. It must certainly have been fully established before the 
building of the Bharhut Stupa, as .the well-known footprints are represented in two 
separate sculptures, in one of which they form the object of worship.^ In the "Ladder 
scene " at Sankisa, the print of one foot is shown on the top step, and that of the other 
foot on the lowermost step of the middle line of steps by which Buddha descended from 
the Trayastrinshas heavens. In the first sculpture the footprints are placed on a throne 
or altar which is canopied by an umbrella hung with garlands. A royal personage is 
kneeling before the altar, and reverently touching the footprints with his hands. The 
second example is in the bas-relief representing the visit of Ajatasatru to Buddha. 
Here, as in all the other Bharhut Sculptures, Buddha does not appear in person, his 
presence being marked by his footprints on the step of the throne.^ The "Wheel Symbol, 
which was one of the 32 birth-marks of a child destined to become a Bodhisatwa, is duly 
marked on both footprints.'' Perhaps the worship of the footprints may have sprung up 

1 Ward's Hindus, Vol. I. p. 206; and Journal of Bengal Asiatic Society, Vol. XVIII. p. 97. 

2 Mr. Healy, in the " Calcutta Eeview." 

3 See Plate XXXI. fig. 4, for the four thrones. Sakya Muni's throne will be found in Plate XIII., left- 
hand sculpture. 

* See Plate XIV., right hand, and Plate XVI. right hand. 

6 See Plate XVI., middle bas-relief. " See Plate XVI. 3. 

? Lalita Vistara, translated by M. Foucaux from Tibetan, p. 108. 


in imitation of the reverence shown by Maha Kasyapa and the priesthood to the actual 
feet of Buddha, when his body was lying on the funeral pile. " Adjusting his robes 
" (so) as to leave one shoulder bare, and with clasped hands, having performed the 
" paddkhman perambulation three times round the pile, he opened (the pile) at the feet, 
" reverentially bowed down his head at the feet of Bhagawa."^ The 500 priests did the 
same, and when the whole were in the " act of bowing down in adoration the funeral 
" pile of Bhagaw^ spontaneously ignited." 

Another name for these " footprints " is Sripdda, which is the common term now in 
use in Ceylon.^ According to Spence Hardy, Buddha " left an impriat of his foot on 
" the bank of the river (Narmada), in the midst of a sandy desert, on a spot that is 
" occasionally covered by the waves. This impression may still be seen in the Yon 
" country, at a place where the waves strike upon a sandhill, and they again retire. It 
" is only on the retiring of the waves that the mark of the foot can be seen. From the 
" river Grotama went to the rock Sachabadha, upon the summit of which at the request 
" of a priest of the same name, he made an impression of his foot in clay."^ Hardy 
suggests that a town named Siripala, which is placed by Ptolemy on the Narmada 
River, where it is joined by the Mophis or Myhes, ought probably to be Sripada, or the 
" illustrious foot." This scene is accompanied by a long inscription which I am unable 
to translate, but the pith of it would appear to be in the last few words, Bhagavato sdsani 

3. BoDHi Trees. 

The Bodhi Tree is a very common subject in Buddhist Sculpture; but it is only at 
Bharhut that we find the important addition of the names of the Buddhas to whom the 
trees belonged. The names of six out of the last seven Buddhas have been found ; but 
the Bodhi Tree of Krakuchanda is broken, although his name is quite intact. The five 
remaining trees are represented in the accompanying Plates, to which I have added a 
sixth, which is being worshipped by a herd of wild Elephants. 

The earliest of the Buddhas whose Bodhi Tree has been found is Vipasin, whose 
tree has a Throne or Bodhimanda in front, before which two people are kneeling, whilst 
a crowd of others with joined hands are standing on each side of the tree. The sculpture 
is labelled Bhagavato Vipasino Bodhi, or " the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Vipasyin.^ His 
tree was the Pdtali, or Trumpet Flower, Bignonia Suaveolens. 

The Bodhi Tree of the next Buddha, named Sikhin, has not been found ; but that 
of the third of the seven Buddhas, named Viswabhu, is in excellent order, and is duly 
labelled Bhagavato Vesabhuno Bodhi Sdlo, or " the Bodhi Sal Tree of the Buddha Vis- 
wabhu."^ His tree was the 8dl or Shorea Robusta. There is a Throne or Bodimanda 
in front, surmounted by the symbol which is so common in all Buddhist Sculptures and 
coins, and which is freely used as an ornament for earrings and necklaces. In shape it 
may be compared to the small Greek letter Omega, surmounting an Omikron, or circle. 

1 Turnour in Bengal Asiatic Society Journal, VII. 1012. ^ Hardy, Eastern Monachism, p. 227. 

3 Hardy, Manual of Buddhism, pp. 209, 210. * See Plate LIV. No. 65, for this inscription. 

5 See Plate XXIX. fig. 1. It is on No. 2 Pillar of the N.W. quadrant. The inscription is given in Plate 

LIII. fig. 67. 

« Ibid., fig. 2. It is on No. 2 Pillar of S.E. quadrant. The inscription is given in Plate LIII. No. 2 Pillar 
fig. 3. I have given another specimen of Sal Tree with its flowers in the same Plate. 
H 255. Q 


The latter would appear to be the Dharm/ma Ohahra, and the former is the Tri-ratna, or 
" Triple Grem," which has been already noticed. Numerous garlands are hanging from 
all the branches of the tree. Two figures, male and female, are kneeling beside the 
throne, and two others, also male and female, are standing under the tree. The former is 
offering a bowl, and the latter a garland. 

The next Bodhi Tree is that of Krakuchanda, the first of the last four Buddhas, 
which was a 8irisa or Acacia. This sculpture is unfortunately broken, but the inscribed 
label is stiU perfect, Bhagawato KaJcmadhasa Bodhi, or the " Bodhi Tree of the Buddha 

The Bodhi Tree of the next Buddha, Kanaka Muni was an ZTdmnlxwa, or JPicus 

glomerata. It has a Bodhimanda, or throne in front, supported on pillars, with two 

kneeling females before it. Under the tree which has garlands on its branches, are two 

male figures offering respectively a bowl and a garland. The sculpture is duly labelled 

Bhagavato Konigamenasa Bodhi, or " the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Konagamena " (or 

Kanaka Muni).^ 

The bas-relief representing the Bodhi Tree of Kasyapa Muni, the third Buddha, is 

similar to those already described, with the exception that one of the females is sitting on 

a Morha before the throne, instead of kneeling. The tree of this Buddha was the 

Nyagwdha, that is the Banian or Ficus Indica ; but the treatment of the leaves, as far as 

I have noticed, does not appear to differ in any observable points from that of the 

TJdvmha/ra, or the Pippala ; and I can see no trace of any of the distinctive downward 

offshoots of a Banian tree. Perhaps the garlands hanging above the throne may have 

interfered with the proper delineation of the Tree, as other examples have the distinctive 

pendent roots of the Banian Tree, of which I have given one specimen in the Plate. 

The sculpture is labelled Bhagavato Kasajpasa Bodhi, or " the Bodhi Tree of Buddha 


The Bodhi Tree of the last Buddha Sakya Muni is much more elaborately treated 

than any of the others.* This was the Pippala, or Ficus Beligiosa. The trunk is entirely 

surrounded by an open-pillared building with an upper storey, ornamented with niches 

containing umbrellas. Two umbrellas are placed in the top of the tree, and numerous 

streamers are hanging from the branches. In the two upper comers are flying figures 

with wings, bringing offerings of garlands. On each side there is a male figure raising a 

garland in his right hand, and holding the tip of his tongue with the thumb and forefinger 

of the left liand. This curious action is also seen in another sculpture, in which the 

worship of Sakya Muni's Bodhi Tree is represented.** In the lower story of the building 

there is a throne in front of a tree surmounted by two specimens of the favourite 

Buddhist symbol, which has before appeared with the Bodhi Tree of Viswabhu. Two 

figures, male and female, are kneeling before the throne", while a female figure is standing 

to the left, and a Naga Raja with his hands crossed on his breast to the right. This 

figure is distinguished by a triple Serpent crest, and his attitude of devotion is exactly 

1 See Plate XXIX. for the sculpture ; and Plate LIIL No. 71, for the inscription. 

2 See Plate XXIX. fig. 4, for the sculpture, which is on No. IX. Pillar of the S.E. quadrajit. The inscription 
is given in Plate LIIL No. IX. Pillar, fig. 11. 

3 See Plate XXX. fig. 1, for the sculpture; and Plate LIV. No. 49, for the inscription. 

* See Plate XXX. fig. 3, for the sculpture ; which belongs to the South-west quadrant. The inscription is 
given in Plate LIV., Corner Pillar, S, Gateway, No. 28. 
B See Plate XVIL, lower compartment, right hand. 


similar to that of tlie Mga Raja Chakavaka on the corner pillar of the South Gate. To 
the extreme right there is an isolated pillar surmounted by an Elephant holding out a 
garland in his trunk. On the domed roof of the building is inscribed, Bhagwvato 8aJca 
Mmhim Bodhi, or « the Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Sakya Muni." 

As a further illustration of Tree "Worship I may refer to a very curious scene of a 
herd of wild Elephants paying their devotions to a Bodhi Tree. In this instance the tree 
is easily recognisable as a Banian by its long pendent shoots ; and this identification is 
confirmed by the name of Nyagrodha, -which occurs in the accompanying inscribed label. 
In front of the tree is the usual throne, or Bodhimanda, before which Elephants, old and 
young, are kneeling. To the right and left other Elephants are bringing garlands to 
hang on the branches of the tree. In the upper left comer there is a second tree, and to 
to the right, where the stone is broken, a male figure with joined hands overlooks the 
whole scene. There are two labels attached to this sculpture. The first, which is limited 
to lahu-hathiho, or " the great herd of Elephants," is inscribed on one of the small sculp- 
tured pillars of the Buddhist Railing, immediately below the throne. The other describes 
the scene bahu hathiha nigodha nadode, which I am unable to translate satisfactorily.^ Nigodha 
is the Nyagrodha or Banian, which was the Bodhi Tree of Kasyapa Buddha, and is 
correctly represented in the sculpture. The last word nadode occurs again in two other 
inscribed labels.^ 

A similar scene is described by both of the Chinese pilgrims. Fa Hian and Hwen 
Thsang, but the object of reverence was the deserted Stupa of Ramagrama. According 
to the elder pilgrim, " ever and anon a herd of Elephants, carrying water in their trunks, 
piously watered the ground, and also brought all sorts of flowers and perfumes to pay 
religious worship at the Tower. Buddhist pilgrims from all countries come here to pay 
their vows, and worship at the shrine. On one occasion some of these (or one of these) 
met the Elephants, and being very much frightened concealed themselves amongst the 
trees. They then saw the Elephants perform their services according to the Law."* 

The account of Hwen Thsang is much more brief, but it confirms Fa Hian's 
description of the herd of wild Elephants making offerings of flowers to the Stupa of 
Ramagrama.* I conclude that the scene shown in the Bharhut Sculpture is an old form 
of the legend as it existed in the time of Asoka. I think also that the single man standing 
to the right of the tree is intended to represent the frightened pilgrim who concealed 
himself amongst the trees, and thus beheld the spontaneous offerings made by the herd of 
wild Elephants. The whole scene in fact appears to me to be exactly the same as that 
described by the two Chinese pilgrims, with the single difference of the substitution of a 
Bodhi Tree for the Stupa of Ramagrama. 

A very fine specimen of a Bodhi Tree occurs on a long Rail Bar of one of the Gate- 
ways. There is no label attached to it ; but the foliage is so distinct from that of the 
Bodhi Trees of the last three Buddhas, that I feel certain it must be intended for the 
Svrisa, or Acacia, of their immediate predecessor KrakucJihanda. The trunk is surmounted 
by a two-storeyed building, with arched openings, and in the Courtyard there is an 

1 See Plate XV., right hand, for the sculpture, which belongs to a corner pillar of the S. Gate. The 
inscription is given in Plate LIV. No. 44. 

2 See the last two scenes in Plate XLVIII. Nos. 9 and 11, and the inscriptions in Plate LIII., Copings Nos. 
18 and 19. 

3 Beal's Fa Hian, p. 91. * .Tulien's Hwen Thsang, p. 91. 

Q 2 



isolated pillar surmouiited by an Elephant. All the details are quite different from those 
of the Bodhi Trde of Sakya Muni, but the most marked difference is in the small delicate 
foliage, "which I take to be intended for the Svrisa of Krakuchhanda.^ 


The purely decorative ornaments which fill more than a half of the full medallions, 
and nearly all the half medallions, may be divided into three classes, according to their 
prevailing subjects, as Animal, Flowered, and Geometrical. 

Most of the animals occurring in these medallions have already been described, but 
as they are generally surrounded with flowered borders, some of the more striking amongst 
them will be noticed on account of-their adjuncts. These flowered borders are by far the 
finest works of the kind that I have yet seen in India. In the five accompanying Plates 
I have given upwards of forty specimens of the medallions, which include examples of 
every kind yet found excepting those that represent Buddhist legends.^ But most of 
these, as well as the Jatakas and other scenes, have already been given in some of the 
preceding Plates. 

There is only one example of a Geometrical pattern amongst all the numerous 
sculptured medallions at Bharhut. But even in this apparently simple pattern the 
guiding feature is the Swastika, or mystic cross, and the whole is only a repetition of the 
cross with its four arms extended, each of which meets one of the extended arms of 
another cross. The pattern is effective as a decoration.* 

In the flowered medallions, the central portion is always a many-leaved lotus, of 
which there are some very striking representations. Except in a few rare instances the 
flowers are always full blown, with 'the different rows of leaves well displayed. The leaves 
are generally pointed with rounded sides ; but in some instances, for the sake of variety, 
their edges are made straight, and in a few others the points are rounded.* In the few 
exceptional cases the inner leaves are represented as only just beginning to open, while 
the outer leaves are fully displayed.-'"' The simple lotus flower, without borders or 
ornamental addition of any kind, forms a common and effective decoration.'' But the 
favourite design would appear to have been the full-blown lotus, surrounded with a broad 
border. In these borders the artist has showed both fertility of design and delicacy of 
taste, and the result is a series of ornamental medallions of rare beauty. Sometimes the 
border is confined to another row of leaves, divided from the central flower by a circular 
band, either plain or ornamented.' But the more usual form is a border of a distinct 
design, either of animals, or of ornamental chains, or of geometrical figures, or of repetitions 
of small flowers, or of a continuous undulating stalk studded with leaves and flowers. 

Of the first class of these borders there are only a few specimens, representing a 
succession of winged lions, and of serpents' heads.^ 

Of the second class there are two examples in the Plates, which I take to be intended 
for some of the elaborate neck chains worn by all the people of rank. One of them 

1 See Plate XXXI. fig. 3. 

2 See Plates XXXIV. to XXXVIII. 

3 See Plate XI., middle pillar, full medallion. 

* See Plate XXXVI. fig. 8 for the former, and 
Plate XXXV, fig. 8, for the latter, 

6 See Plate XXXV. fig. 7. 

6 See Plate XXXVIII. figs. 5 and 10. 

7 See Plate XXXV. fig. 6. 

8 See Plate XXXVI. fig. 5 ; and 
XXXVIII. figs. 4 and 11. 




consists of five rows of beads or pearls, witli a number of round and square ornaments 
placed at intervals to the different strings in position.^ The second example given in 
fig. 9, Plate XXXVIII., is much simpler. Of the geometrical borders I have given two 
specimens. The first, composed of linked squares and circles, is found as an abacus 
ornament on one of Asoka's pillars, and the other, composed of a succession of curved 
figures, is clearly suggestive of the serpents' heads already noted.^ The borders of 
continuous rows of small flowers are very numerous. Four examples will be found in the 
Plates, which I have selected as exhibiting the richness and variety of the Bharhut style 
of ornamentation.^ In some medallions the row of flowers is changed for a succession of 
small sprigs of conventional forms, which has an equally rich effect, but is perhaps not so 
striking.* The borders, composed of undulating stalks studded with leaves and flowers, 
are of less common occurrence. The two examples given in the Plates are fine specimens 
of these rich borders, but in one of them, at least, the flowers are perhaps too much 

Of the full medallions represented in the Plates, fig. 1 of Plate XXXV. has already 
been noticed as offering the bust of a Queen. Pig. 1, Plate XXXVI., is considered by 
Mr. Beglar to have been altered " by cutting and mutilating the original figure," which 
had " no connexion with the Brahmanical Lakshmi." But the same subject appears in 
the middle of the Gateway architecture of No. 3 Stupa at Bhilsa, the date of which is 
not known, but which is most probably of the same age as the other Sanchi Sculptures, or 
about A.D. 100. A very much earlier representation of this scene, however, occurs on a 
large silver coin of Azilises in my. possession, whose date cannot be later than 70 B.C. 
But in this latter case there is no proof that the subject belongs more to Buddhism than 
to Brahmanism. In the Sanchi Sculpture, however, its prominent position would seem to 
show that it was clearly Buddhistical. The figure of the goddess Lakshmi, sitting on a 
lofty Lotus Throne, was also one of the visions of Queen Trisala, the mother of Mahavira, 
the last hierarch of the Jainas. She held a water lily in her hand, and beside her stood 
her guardian elephant, " bathing her with water from his trunk."" The Bharhut 
specimen has been much injured by repeated ointments of ghi and oil, and the present 
figure of the goddess has been re-cut by a village mason, the marks of whose chisel are 
still prominent. The subject is not an uncommon one with Brahmanical sculptors, but I 
am unable to give any Buddhistical explanation of it. 

The fish-tailed Elephant seen in fig. 2, Plate XXXVI. , occurs amongst the Buddhist 
Sculptures of Buddha Graya, but of a later date. The Elephant is holding up a bunch of 
lotus flowers with his trunk. 

The central symbol of fig. 1, Plate XXXVIL, has already appeared in one of the 
half medallions.' Here it is surmounted by a full-blown lotus flower seen from the side, 
accompanied by two half-blown flowers and two buds. Below it is a half lotus. 

Fig. 3, Plate XXXVII., is entirely a fanciful figure, rising from a lotus, with a 
winged animal on each side. 

1 See Plate XXXVI. fig. 6. 

2 See Plate XXXV. fig. 3, and Plate XXXVI. 
fig. 11. 

3 See Plate XXXVII. figs. 2, 6, 7 ; and Plate 
XXXVI. fig. 8. 

* See Plate XXXVIII. figs. 6 and 7. 
6 See Plate XXXVII. figs. 8 and 9. 

* Dr. Stevenson's Kalpa Sutra, pp. 44, 45. 
' See Plate XXXV. fig. 4. 


Figs. 1 and 3, Plate XXXYIII., are compositions of lotus flowers rising from vases, 
with birds standing on the flowers. The two halves of these medallions are not exactly 
alike, although they have much similarity. They will stand comparison with most 
compositions of the same kind of a much later date, even during the most flourishing 
period of the Mughal empire. 

Pig. 2, Plate XXXYIII., contains the famous Buddhist symbol of the Bharma 
Ghahra, or " "Wheel of the Law," with its top ornament of the Tri Batna, or " Three 
Grems," four times repeated, above, below, and at the two sides. The same quadrangle 
form is also found upon early Buddhist coins, and on one of the Pillars at Sonari, near 


The number of buildings represented in the Bharhut Sculptures is not many, and as 
most of them are on a very small scale, they offer but few details. "We get, however, the 
leading features of all the principal religious structures, such as Stupas, Palaces (Prdsdda), 
Temples or Shrines [Kuti and Punya 8dla), Thrones of the Buddhas (Bodhimamda and 
Vajrdsan), and PiUars, both isolated and combined. There are also several representations 
of Ascetic Hermitages, as well as a few specimens of the common dwellings of the people. 
I will now give a short account of these different kinds of buildings, as far as I have been 
able to make them out from their small sculptured representations. The Stupas have 
already been described and do not require any further notice in this place. 

1. Palaces. 

Of Palaces there is one specimen labelled Vijayanta Prdsdda, which was the name of 
the Palace of the Devas in the Trayastrinshas Heavens. It is a three-storeyed building, 
and the only one of that height represented in the Sculptures.-^ The basement storey 
appears to be an open-piUared hall, the lower third of its height being closed by a Budd- 
hist Bailing. The building is also divided into three portions perpendicularly, of which the 
middle portion is retired. The lower third of the second storey is also closed by a Buddhist 
Bailing, above which rise three arched openings, one on each section of the building. 
Above these a broad band, probably of mouldings, runs the whole width of the temple. 
The third storey also has its Buddhist Bailing, above which are two arched openings in 
the wings, the middle recessed portion being plain. This would seem to be the usual 
finish for the uppermost story of such buildings, as it is repeated in the Punya Sala of 
Eaja Prasenajita.^ In the Vijayanta Prasada the roof is not fully displayed, owing to 
want of space in the panel ; but as all the other buildings in the Bharhut Sculptures are 
covered with domes, I presume that this also had a domed roof. As it is here represented 
there is nothing but its size and its three storeys to distinguish this Prasada or Palace 
from the smaller buildings called Kuti and Pvm,ya Sola as well as from the canopy 
buildings which covered the Bodhimanda thrones or seats of the Buddhas. 

1 See Plate XVI. fig. A, to left. The shrine of the Chuda Maha, or head ornament of Buddha, and the 
dance of the Apsarases below, are further proofs that the building labelled Vijayanta Prasada is a palace. 

2 See Plate XIII. fig. 3. 


Tte Euti, in the two specimens labelled as Ocmdha Kuti and KosdmU Kuti, was a 
single-storeyed building, enclosing an altar or throne with a garland hanging over it.^ It 
has an arched doorway, which is surmounted by a second arch like a hood-moulding. The 
roof the Eosdmbi Euti is a dome, with a small pinnacle on the top ; but that of the Gwndha 
Euti has gable ends with a pinnacle at each end. 

A building of similar outline to that of the Kuti is represented in the same panel 
with the Vijayanta Prdsada. It has the same arched door with its semicircular hood 
moulding, and the same domed roof. But it appears to be an open-pillared hall with a 
throne in the middle, canopied by an umbrella hung with garlands. It is inscribed, — 

Sudhamma Bevasahhd 
Bhagavato GhMdamahd, 
from which it is certain that this was the Hall of Assembly {Salhd) in the midst of which 
was enshrined a relic of Buddha known as the Ghudd Mahd, or head-dress of Buddha. 
The lower part is surmounted with a Buddhist Bailing.^ 

2. Punya-SIlas or Religious Houses. 

The Punya S41a of Raja Prasenajita is a two-storeyed building which enshrines the 
Dharma Chakra, or " Wheel of the Law " as a symbol of Buddha.* The lower storey 
appears to be an open-pillared hall standing on a plinth or basement which is ornamented 
with a Buddhist Railing. The upper storey, like that of the Yijayanta Temple, as I have 
previously noticed, is divided into three portions, of which the middle one is slightly 
retired. The two wings are pierced with arched windows covered with semicircular 
hood-mouldings, and the wall of the centre portion is ornamented with a line of 
Buddhist Railing up to the springing of the hood-moulding. From this level also springs 
the semi-cylindrical domed roof with two gable ends, and a line of eight small pinnacles 
on the ridge. 

3. Vajhasan Canopies. 

Of the Bodhimandd shrines, or Vajrdsan canopies, there are several fine examples, more 
especially that of Sakya Muni, and another without inscription. In both of these the 
building consists of two storeys. The simpler form, which, as I believe, canopies the 
Bodhimanda and Sirisa Tree of Krakuchanda, has three arched openings in front, and was 
most probably a square building, with the same number of openings on all sides, some- 
what similar to the present Bdradari, or twelve-door summer house.* The trunk of the 
Bodhi Tree with the Vajrasan or Diamond Throne is seen in the middle opening, and 
pendent garlands in the side openings. The two storeys are separated by an ornamental 
band of Buddhist Railing. In the centre appears the upper part of the Bodhi Tree 
breaking through the roof, and on each side a small arched window, or niche, with a 
garland hanging inside, darlands are also pendent from ,the branches of the tree. The 
style of roof is uncertain, but as the building has rounded ends it was most probably 
covered by a dome. 

1 See Plate XXVIII. fig. 3. Gandha Kuti is near the top of the medallion, with its name inscribed on the 
edge above; the Kosimbi Kuti is to the left below, with its name on the left edge beside it. 

2 See Plate XVI. fig. 1. 3 gee Plate XIII. fig. 3, * See Plate XXXI. fig. 3 


The more ornate example of the Vajrasan canopy is that "which enshrines the 
Bodhimanda of Sakya Muni, as inscribed on the roof of the building.^ The sculpture 
presents an open-pillared hall with a broad projecting front, and retired wings to the 
right and left. From its appearance I conclude that the building was square, and that it 
presented a similar elevation on all four sides. We know that the Bodhimanda of a much 
later date was a square building,^ and it seems probable that the more modem building 
would have preserved the shape of the original, however much it may have differed from 
it in size. In the bas-relief the human figures are , represented on a much larger scale 
than either the Bhodi Tree or the buildings, the two figures standing on the upper storey 
being just one half of the height of the tree. But allowing the tree to have been 40 or 
50 feet high, the building would have been from 20 to 30 feet in height, and from 30 to 
40 feet square. The smaller dimensions are the more probable, as I observe that the 
front of the building is supported on two pillars only. But if the structure was of wood 
the larger dimensions are the more likely. 

A broad band of Buddhist Railing rests directly on the pillars, and separates the two 
storeys of the building. The projecting front is pierced by two arched windows, or 
niches, covered by semi-circular hood-mouldings, and both of the wings have similar 
openings. An umbrella stands in each niche with pendant garlands ; and the wings 
niches have a human figure standing on each side. The roof is rounded at the ends and 
appears to be a flat dome surmounted by three small pinnacles. The top of the roof just 
reaches the lowermost branches of the tree. 

4. BodhimandI Thrones. 

The Vajrasan or Bodhimanda Throne of Sakya Muni is placed in the middle of the 
lower storey of the building, immediately in front of the trunk of the Bodhi Tree. This 
was the sacred Seat on which Sakya sat for six years in abstract meditation until he 
gained Buddhahood. The front only of the throne or seat is represented, but this is 
sufficient to show that it was a square plinth ornamented on each face with four small 
pillars. On the top, to the right and left of the tree, are placed two Dharma Ghahra 
symbols, which here, as elsewhere throughout the Bharhut Sculptures, take the place of 
Buddha himself. There are two figures on each side of the throne, a man standing 
and a woman kneeling on the right, and a woman standing and a man kneeling on the 

The whole scene is a very curious one, and if, as I suppose, the building be an actual 
representation of the shrine that surmounted the famous Bodhvmandd at Bauddha Gaya, 
we have before us a very fine specimen of Indian architecture of the time of Asoka, and 
one of the most sacred objects of Buddhist worship. That the tree represented in the 
sculpture is the holy Bodhi Tree of Sakya Muni, is placed beyond all doubt by the 
following inscription on the roof of the building : 

Bhagavato 8dka Mvmmo Bodhi: 
«' the Bodhi (Tree) of the Buddha Sakya Muni." 

1 See Plate XIII., outer face of pillar. 

2 Julian's Hwen Thsang, TI. 460. The pilgrim speaks of the four corners of the building, and notes that 
it was about 100 paces in circuit, or upwards of 60 feet on each side. 


In anotlier Plate I have given a view of a large building, containing four seats, with 
garlands hanging over them, which I believe to be intended for the thrones of the four 
Buddhas.^ I have already stated my conjecture that the human hands, which are here 
sculptured on the side of each throne, may be symbolical representatives of a crowd of 
human worshippers. The style of the building is similar to that of all the others, its 
main features being a large open hall supported on octagonal pillars with bell capitals, and 
an upper storey with three arched windows, the whole being covered by a long dome- 
shaped roof, surmounted by ten small pinnacles. 

5. Pillars. 

The monolith Pillars sculptured in the Bharhut bas-reliefs are necessarily very small, 
but sufl&cient details are given to show that the shafts were usually octagonal, that they 
very rarely had any bases, and that the capitals were of the bell shape, so well known to 
us from Asoka's monoliths at Allahabad, Bakra, and Lauriya, but above the bell capitals 
there appears a second capital, which I was at first inclined to identify with the spreading 
bracket capitals of the Manikyala Stupa and other buildings in the western Pan jab and 
Kabul valley. But when I found that no regular architraves were represented in any of 
the Bharhut Sculptures, I came to the conclusion that what appeared at first sight as an 
upper or bracket capital was perhaps only the end of a transverse architi'ave, after the 
fashion of the temples of Kashmir. In one of the examples, however, this does not 
appear to be the case, as the upper capitals are very much spread, and are most probably 
intended for actual brackets.^ 

There are two examples of isolated Pillars, or large monoliths, of which views will be 
found in the Plates.* In each case the pillar is surmounted by an elephant. Both have 
bell-shaped capitals, but their style of ornamentation is different ; that of the pillar near 
Krackuchanda's Bodhi Tree being composed of large leaves as in all the examples of the 
six compartments of one of the corner pillars,* while that of the piUar near Sakya Muni's 
Bodhi Tree is composed of festoons touching each other the same as we now see in all 
the existing specimens of Asoka's monoliths ; the same festoon ornament is used for the 
capitals of the pillars in the bas-relief of the herd of wild elephants worshipping the 
Banian Tree of Kasyapa Muni.^ But as much larger specimens of both of these styles still 
exist in the four capitals surmounting the grouped octagonal shafts of the sole remaining 
pillar of the Eastern Gateway, we see that the sculptors of these bas-reliefs, even in their 
smallest works, adhered strictly to a correct delineation of actual forms. All the details 
of these capitals will be seen in the accompanying Plates.^ I wish to direct special 
attention to the small height of the bell portion compared to its breadth, as I look upon 
this particular feature as a certain proof of the antiquity of the Pillar, and therefore of 
all the sculptures of the great Buddhist Railing to which it belongs. 

The octagonal form of shaft, which is universal throughout all the different kinds of 
buildings in the Bharhut Sculptures, is departed from only in the two examples of 

1 See Plate XXXI. fig. 4, taken from one of the long Eail-bars. 

2 See Plate XXXI. fig. 2. 

3 See Plate XIII. outer face of pillar, and Plate XXXI. fig. 3. 

4 See Plate XVI. and XVII. 

5 See Plate XXX. fig. 3, and Plate XV. fig. 3. 

6 See Plates XXI. and XII. for three diflferent views. 
H 255. B 


isolated Pillars, already noticed, both, of which have round shafts. We know also that 
all the six existing monoliths of Asoka have round shafts, and that the bas-reliefs of the 
Buddhist Railings at Bauddha G-aya represent aU the pillars of buildings as either 
octagonal or polygonal. It seems probable therefore that in the age of Asoka the use 
of the circular shaft was confined to the great isolated monoliths, such as he himself set 
up, and that the polygonal shaft was in general use for buildings of all kinds, both 
religious and civil. This conclusion seems only natural, when we remember the wide- 
spread diffusion of the one fixed type of pillar for a Buddhist Sailing which was in 
common use throughout India for many centuries, from the banks of the Indus to the 
mouth of the Ganges, and from the Himalayas to the banks of the Kistna. 

6. Ascetics — Hermitages. 

The Hermits dwellings are all of one uniform pattern — consisting of a single 
circular room, with a hemispherical domed roof .^ A narrow door is always represented ; 
but there is nothing to show of what material these hermitages were constructed. I infer 
that they are not farifia sdlas, or " leaf houses," as there are no indications of leaves, such 
as we see in the Sanchi Sculptures, but simple round huts with mat walls and thatched 
roofs. In a single instance the roof is represented as divided into large squares breaking 
Joint which must therefore be intended to represent either slates or large flat tiles.^ 


There is some variety in the cottages of the people, but this affects only the dis- 
tribution of the different buildings and not their form, which is of one stereotyped 
pattern, — consisting of a long room, with either a pointed or a semicylindrical domed 
roof, and a small opening in each gable to give air and light.* The ends of the longi- 
tudinal timbers are shown in the gables, which leaves no doubt that the roofs were 
thatched. The walls were almost certainly of unbaked bricks or sun-dried mud, as the 
wall of one of the quadrangles is represented with a coping on which a bird is sitting, 
while the opening in the house wall for the two-leaved door shows a deep recess, which 
would not have been the case with a mat wall.* The general arrangement of the private 
houses would appear to have been just the same as at the present. Three or four 
separate huts are so disposed as to form three or four sides of a square. With three huts 
the entrance is on the fourth side, which is closed by a wall. With four huts the entrance 
lies through one of the huts. 

I have reserved to the last the question of what materials the religious buildings 
were made, whether of stone or of wood. Excepting in one solitary instance, there are no 
visible marks to declare the nature of the material, but in that one instance of the walls 
of the TrihitiJca or dwelling of the Njigas, the layers of masonry breaking bond are too 
plain and distinct to be mistaken. But the Stupa itself was a mass of brick masonry, 
although there are no indications of masonry in the representations of Stupas in the bas- 
reliefs. This may perhaps be explained by the fact that masonry walls were usually 
plastered over, and as the plaster presented a plain surface there were no marks to 

1 See Plates XLVIII. fig. 7 ; XXVI. fig. 3 ; and XLVI. fig. 4. 2 See Plate XXVI. fig. 3. 

3 See Plate XLII. fig. 7 ; and Plate XLV. fig. 7. * See Plate XLV. fig. 7, 


represent. This explanation -would also be a sufficient reason for the absence of masonry 
marks in the other religious buildings. 

That wood was plentiful and in common use we learn from Megasthenes who states 
that the walls of Palibothra in the time of Chandra Gupta Maurya, the grandfather of 
Asoka, were of wood, pierced with openings for the discharge of arrows.^ It may there- 
fore be presumed that the 570 towers and 64 gates of Palibothra were likewise built of 
wood. But we learn also from the same authority that only the cities that were situated 
near the sea were built of wood, " for no buildings of brick would last long there, not 
" only because of the violence of the rains, but also of the rivers, which, overflowing 
" their banks, cause an annual inundation over all the flat country. But the cities which 
" are situated on an eminence, are frequently built with brick and mortar."^ It is clear, 
therefore, that both modes of construction were in common use even before the age of 
Asoka, about whose time I fix the erection of the Bharhut Stupa. 

The account of Megasthenes will be more clearly understood by comparing it with 
the common practice at the present day in Burmah, which possesses all the conditions of 
" violent rains, overflowing river, and vicinity to the sea." .There all the private 
dwelling-houses, as well as the monasteries, are without any exception built jof wood, 
while the Stupas are always, and the Temples are generally, built of brick. The houses 
of the people, which are placed along the banks of the rivers for the sake of convenience, 
are necessarily built of wood, as they are all raised upon piles so as to allow the flood 
waters to pass by unchecked. For a religious building some eminence is usually selected, 
and if the spot is beyond the reach of flood, bricks will certainly be used. 

In the damp climate of Palibothra, with its broad wet ditch, it is easy to understand 
the preference given to a wooden stockade over a brick wall. But in the drier climates 
of upper and middle India, where stone is plentiful, and wood dear, it seems more 
probable that all buildings of any consequence would have been constructed of stone, — 
or partly of stone and parj}ly of brick. I conclude, therefore, that all the great buildings 
in the Bharhut Sculptures are intended to represent structures of stone or brick, and not 
of wood. In one instance indeed, and that a most remarkable one, the great triple 
ladder, by which Buddha descended from the Trayastrinsha heavens, is represented as 
made of stone,® which I recognise at once as being of exactly the same form as that of 
the stone ladder discovered near the "Western entrance of the Bharhut Stupa.* Any 
wooden ladder ^would certainly have been of a much lighter form, and much more like a 
ladder than the solid staircase of the bas-relief. 

With respect to the Vihdras or Temples, which were often very lofty buildings, it is 
not impossible that some of the upper storeys may have been made of wood. This was 
probably the case with the great Vihir of the Jetavana Monastery at !lSravasti, which 
was no less than seven storeys in height. Its destruction by fire is thus described by 
Fa Hian." ® " The monarchs of all the surrounding countries, and their inhabitants, vied 
" with each other in presenting religious offerings at this spot. They decked the place 
" with flags and silken canopies, and offered flowers and burnt incense, whilst the lamps 

1 Strabon-Geograph. XV. 1, 36. We have also a second testimony to the same effect in Euphorion, who 
was the librarian of Antioehus the Great. According to him " the Indian Morias {Maurt/as) lived in wooden 
houses." See my " Coins of Indian Buddhist Satraps," in the Bengal Asiatic Society's Journal, Vol. XXIII. p. 680. 

» Arrian, Indica X. I * See Plate V. bottom fig. 

3 See Plate XVII. fig. 2. I ^ Beal's Fa Hian, c. XX. p. 76. 

B 2 


" shone out after day with unfading splendour. Unfortunately a rat, gnawing at the wicks 
" of one of the lamps, caused it to set fire to one of the hg,nging canopies, and this resulted 
" in a general conflagration, and the entire destruction of the seven storeys of the Vihdra." 
In the above description I would suggest that instead of " canopies " we should read 
" streamers or garlands," such as I have seen both in Laddk and Burma, and which are 
represented as attached to all the Religious Buildings of the Bharhut Sculptures. If the 
Jetavana Vihara had been built entirely of brick, like the great Viharas at Buddha Gaya 
and Nilanda, the ignition of dozens of these light gossamer streamers could not possibly 
have done any damage to it. But if, as I suppose, there was a staircase leading to the 
uppermost story, which was supported on wooden beams instead of being vaulted, then 
the conflagration and destruction of the building would be certain. 


As there still remain to be noticed a few important sculptures which could not well 
be included under any of the previous headings, I will now briefly describe them under 
the following divisions : — 1. Vehicles; 2. Furniture; 3. Utensils; 4. Musical Instruments. 

1. Vehicles. 

The only Vehicles that I have observed amongst all the varied scenes of the Bharhut 
Sculptures are the Boat, the Horse Chariot, and the Bullock Cart. 

Of the Boat there are two examples, but unfortunately they are both in the same 
bas-relief, and that still lies buried under the walls of the Palace at Uchhahara. I had it 
dug up, and whilst it was above ground I had an impression made of it, which I pencilled 
over on the spot, and from that impression the present sketch has been reduced.^ The 
scene is a very curious one. Two Boats, each containing three men, are represented on 
a rough sea. A huge fish with open mouth is swallowing one of the Boats with its crew, 
while the crew of the second Boat, who have stopped rowing, are evidently anticipating 
the same fate. 

The Boats themselves are of exactly the same build as the Boat in the Sfi,nchi 
Sculptures. The Bharhut examples, however, are about three centuries older ; but as the 
very same pattern of boat and the same oars are still in use at the present day, this bas- 
relief only affords us another example of the unchanging habits of the Hindus. Such as 
their Boat was in the days of Asoka, such it is now. The planks are notched on their 
edges to prevent their sliding, and they are fastened together by iron clamps. The oars 
are shaped somewhat like large spoons : each has a long bambu handle, with a flat piece 
of wood at the end to hold the water. 

Of the Horse Chariots there are also two examples. One of them is the Royal Chariot 
of Raja Prasenajit ; and the other is most probably a king's chariot also. 

The Chariot of Prasenajit is a two- wheeled vehicle with a high ornamented front 
and lower sides.^ It is of good size as it holds four people : the Raja himself standing 
in mid front with the driver on his left hand, a chawd hearer on his right hand, and an 
umbrella holder behind him. The chariot is drawn by four horses with plumes on their 

1 See Plate XXXIV. fig. 2. ? See Plate XIII. fig. 3. 



heads. Their long manes are plaited, and their long tails are tied up on one side to 
prevent the animals whisking them in the charioteer's face. 

The other chariot occurs in the Mugapaka Jataka. It is empty but is exactly the 
same with the last, with the same four horses.'- 

Of the Bulloch Oarts there are likewise two specimens. One in the bas-relief of the 
Jetavana monastery, and the other filling the whole of the medallion of one of the Eail- 
bars. In both examples the Bullocks are unyoked. 

The small Cart which took AndthapindiJca' s gold coins to the Jetavana garden appears 
to be very much the same as the common two-bullock cart of the present day. It has the 
same yoke with the same two pins to secure the neck of each bullock. Apparently there 
are no sides. ^ The large cart in the Rail medallion is a much more costly vehicle. It has 
only two wheels, but it has straight wooden sides, and a straight wooden back. There is 
also a roof placed on the ground beside the cart. From the shape of the roof it would 
appear that the cart must have been square. The driver is sitting on the ground with a 
cloth passed round his knees and loins ; and in front the two Bullocks are sitting in the 
usual drowsy fashion.' 


The chief articles of Furniture are Seats of different kinds, Bedsteads, and Lamps. 

The Seats are of two kinds : chairs with backs and arms, and morhas or stools. The 
use of the former would seem to have been restricted to royal personages, as I find that 
King Nanda occupies one of the examples, and King Magha Deva another. There is a 
third specimen in the bas-relief of the Kinnara Jataka in which the king is seated with 
two Kinnaras before him.* Other people, including even the minister in the Andhabhuta 
Jataka, sit upon low stools or rocks. 

Of Bedsteads there is only one example, but it is a good one as it is of large size, in 
the bas-relief of Maya Devi's dreams.^ It is a simple oblong frame supported on four 
round legs with club feet exactly like the common bedstead of the present day. It is 
entirely covered by a mattress. 

The Lamp of Asoka's age is also represented in the same bas-relief to show that it 
was night when Maya Devi had her dream of the White Elephant. The present example 
is a standing Lamp with a heavy base to keep it steady. A second example is a hanging 
Lamp, which is introduced into the bas-relief of Ajatasatru's visit to Buddha to show that 
it was night. 

3. Utensils. 

The only Utensil that is specially noticeable in the Bharhut Sculptures is the water 
vessel, which plays an important part in many of the Buddhist legends, as a gift was 
made irrevocable by the donor pouring water over the hands of the donee. A specimen 
of the vessel stands beside the couch of Maya Devi, from which she stayed her thirst in 
the night. The shape of the pot is always the same with a round handle on the top and 
a spout in front exactly like a modern tea kettle. In the bas-relief of Jetavana monastery 

1 See Plate XXV. fig. 4. 

2 See Plate XXVIII. fig. 3 ; 

3 See Plate XXXIV. fig. 1. 

and Plate LVII. 


* See Plate XXV. 3 ; XLVIIL 2 ; and XXVII. 
6 See Plate XXVIIL fig. 2. 



the donor Anathapindika stands with his water vessel in the midst of the garden ready to 
ratify his gift by pouring water over the hands of Buddha.^ A similar vessel is held out 
by the Deva of a Tree to a man seated in front of the tree.^ 

Other utensils are the Bowl and the Plate or Platter. Both will be found in one of 
the bas-reliefs of the coping.* 

4. Musical Instruments. 

The musical instruments are not very numerous, the only specimens that I have 
observed being the Harp, the Drum, the Cymbals, and the Shell. 

1. The Ha/rp would appear to have been the most common instrument in ancient 
times, as it is found in many of the bas-reliefs where no other instrument is used. On 
one of the broken pillars of the S.E. quadrant there was a life-size statue of an Apsaras 
playing a harp of seven strings. A similar instrument is used by the Harper in the bas- 
relief of the Indra-sdla-guha, and by the minister in the Andahhuta Jataka."* This kind of 
Harp was called jpa/rivddini, and was usually sounded with a plectrum {pa/nvdda) held 
between the forefinger and thumb, and not with the hand itself. In the scene in the 
palace of the Devas where the Apsarases are dancing, the music consists of one Drum, 
two Harps, and a pair of Cymbals ; and a similar proportion of the instruments is found 
in the great scene of the Apsarases, where the dancers have their names written beside 
them.^ That the Harp was the principal instrument in the time of Buddha we learn from 
the legend of the Ind/ra-sdla-guha, where Indra sends his Harper Pancha-Sikha to play 
before Buddha. The same kind of harp remained in use down to the time of the Guptas, 
as we find Samudra Gupta himself represented on some of his gold coins playing the 
seven-stringed harp.^ 

2. The Brwm was of two kinds : the small hand Drum which was beaten by the 
fingers, and the large Drum which was suspended from the neck and beaten by 
drumsticks. The former is found in both of the Apsarases scenes as an indoor 

3. The Gymbals are used in both of the Apsaras scenes. 

4. The Shell is found only in the Monkey and Elephant scenes, in which it is fastened 
at the end of a pipe. The sound must have been like that of a shrill trumpet. 

1 See Plate XXVIII. flg. 3. 

« See Plate XLVIII. fig. 11. 

3 See Plate XL. fig. 3. 

* See Plate XXVIII. 4 ; and XXVI. 4. 

s See Plate XVI. fig. 1 ; and XV. 1. 
^ See Journal Asiatic Society, IV. 637; and 
Plate XXXIX. fig. 26. 

' 7 See Plate XV. 1 ; and Plate XXXin. 1, 2, 3. 



The inscriptions on the Railing of the Bharhut Stupa are of the same character as 
those of the great Sanchi Stupa near Bhilsa. They record the names of the donors of 
different parts of the Bailing, as of a Pillar, a BaU-bar, or a piece of Coping. Some of 
them also give the calling or occupation of the donors, and several add the name of their 
native city, or place of residence. The Sanchi inscriptions are generally limited to these 
announcements. But at Bharhut we have a considerable number of inscriptions which 
are labels, or titles, of the sculptured scenes above which they are placed. Thus we have 
the visit of Raja Ajatasatru to Buddha inscribed with the words — 

Ajdtasatru Bhagavato vandate, 
or, "Ajatasatru worships [the feet] of Buddha;" and also a large tree inscribed with — 

Bhagavato Sdka Mvmno BodM, 

or, the " Bodhi Tree of Buddha Sakya Muni." These short records are quite invaluable, 
as they enable us to identify the different scenes to which they are attached with absolute 
certainty. We thus obtain the means of distinguishing one class of people from another 
with confidence, and of ascertaining what legends were current and most popular at the 
early period when this Stupa was erected. 

There is also another prominent difference between the Bharhut and Bhilsa Railings, 
which adds greatly to the value of the former. This is the representation of Yakshas and 
and Yakshinis, and of Naga Rajas and Devatas with their names duly attached to them, 
from which we learn that the old Indian cosmogony, as represented in Buddhist as well as 
Brahm.anical books, with its Ndga-loJca, and its Guardian Rajas of the four quarters of the 
universe, was all fully elaborated as early as the time of Asoka. These inscriptions also 
teach us that the curiously shaped gateways of the well known Sanchi Stupa were called 
by the name of Torana, and that the Rail-bars were named 8uchi, or " needles," no doubt 
because they seemed to thread all the pillars together. 

The alphabetical characters of the inscriptions are precisely the same as those of 
Asoka's time on the Sanchi Stupa, and of the other undoubted records of Asoka on rocks 
and piUars. None of the letters have any heads, as in the coin legends of Amogha-bhuti, 
Dara-Grhosha, and Vamika, and in the still later Mathura inscriptions of Sudasa, Kanishka 
Huvishka, and Vasu Deva. These Bharhut records also preserve the simple style of 
ddnam, which was used in the Asoka period, and which certainly belongs to an earlier 
age than the more elaborate phraseology of Deya-dharmma, which is the prevailing form 
of the Indo-Scythian inscriptions. The Bharhut records also are distinguished by the 
persistent use of the letter r, instead of changing it into I, as in Idja for rdja, of most of 
the Asoka edicts. That this was the actual pronunciations of the people of this part of 
the country is proved by the same use of r in the genuine Asoka edict engraved on the 
neighbouring rock of Rupnath. 



No. 1. On Pillak op B. Gtateway. 

/. Suganom, raje rdjno Gdgt-putasa VISA-DEVASA 

2. pautena, Ootiputasa AQA-RAJA8A putma 

3. Vdchhi-putena BHANA-BEUTINA Jcdritam toranam 

4. Sila harhmata cha upahna. 

No. 2. GrATEWAY Pillar at BatanmIka. 
Sagcmam Baja . . 
Aga Bajna . . 
toranam . . 

No. 3. GrATEWAY Pillar at BatanmIra. 
. . hena 
. . toranameha 
. . Tcata. 

Nos. 2 and 3 must be portions of different inscriptions, and from different Grateways, 
as the word Torana is mentioned in each of them. This is important, as it proves that 
there were three separate Toran Gateways ; and if there were three we know that there 
must have been four, as the comer pillars of the Eail-way found at the four cardinal points 
show that there were four openings. 

For the following translation I am indebted to the kindness of Babu Rajendra Lai, 
who suggests that the word upanna, is most probably ujpdna, a " plinth," but this could 
hardly be applied to the pillars of the Gateway, which are baseless, and spring direct from 
the ground.^ 

" In the kingdom of Sugana (Srughna) this Toran, with its ornamented stonework 
and plinth, was caused to be made by king Dhana-bMti, son of Vdchhi and Aga Baja son 
of Goti, and grandson of Visa Deva son of Qdgi." 

Here it wiU be observed that there are three other names in addition to those of the 
three Rajas, namely Qdgi or Gdrgeya, Goti or Kautseya, and Vdchhi or Vdtseya, which Babu 
Rajendra Lai considered " to be feminine names or the names of the mothers of the different 
" persons they refer to." Now it so happens that these are also the names of three dis- 
tinguished spiritual teachers, Darga, Kautsa, and Vatsa, who gave their names to the three 
schools of the Gdrggir-putimyas Kautsi-puttriyas, and Vdtsi-puttriyas, which led me to 
suppose that possibly the three Rajas might have belonged to these three different schools. 
I therefore referred the inscription with my conjectures to Dr. Blihler, whose great 
acquirements as a Sanskrit scholar are only equalled by his willingness to impart his 
knowledge to others, and from him I received another translation of the inscription, with 
the following clear and satisfactory explanation of the feminine names, " I agree with 
" Rajendra about the meaning of Gdgi (i.e. Gargeyl) putra, &c. Philologically any other 
" interpretation is impossible. If the kings wanted to characterise themselves as adherents 

1 See Plates XI. and XII. 


" of the schools of Gdrgvputra, &c, they expressed themselves incorrectly. The usage of 
" calling sons after their mothers was caused, not by polyandria, as some Sanskritists 
" have suggested, but by the prevalence of polygamy, and it survives among the Rajputs 
" to the present day. In private conversation I have often heard a Kuwar called the 
" ' son of the Solanhani,' or of the OoMldni, &c. Here you will observe the Rani is called 
" according to her family name, not according to her proper name; and you will 
" know, from intercourse with the Rajputs, that the Ranis are always mentioned in that 
" manner."^ 

" Now all the metronymica of the ancient kings and teachers, both Buddhistic and 
" Brahmanical, are formed by a female family name with the word putra. Thus we have 
" VasisMhiputra, or VasitMp'utra, SdtaJearni, &c., and these names ought to be translated, 
" ' son of the (wife) of the Yasishtha family,' &c. The name was just intended to 
" distinguish the king or teacher from the other sons of his father by naming his mother 
" according to her family name. 

" There is another point connected with these metronymica which deserves attention ; 
" viz. that the family names are all those of Brahmanical gotras. The explanation of 
" this fact is that in accordance with the precepts of the Smriti, the Rajas were con- 
" sidered members of the gotras of their purohitas, and called themselves after the latter." 

" My last suggestion refers to the fourth line, 

" 8ila Jcarhmatd cha upana, 
" which I translate into Sanskrit, 

" Sila harmatd cha utpahndi 
" and into English literally, 

" ' And the state of one who [performs] works of piety [has been] produced ; ' 
" or more freely, 

" ' And thereby spiritual merit has been gained.' 

" Upamd \&=.uppannd, as these inscriptions do not note double letters, and uppcmnd is 
" the regular Prakrit for utpammd. My translation of the whole is therefore — 

" This ornamental gateway has been erected by the king of Srughna, Dhanabhuti, 
" born of [the queen of] the Yatsa family, [and] son of Aga-rdja, born of [the queen ofj 
" the Gota family, [and] grandson of king [Visa Deva'], bom of [the queen of] the 
" Gageya race, and spiritual merit has been gained [thereby]." 

The genealogy of the Royal family of Srughna, according to this inscription, is as 
follows : — 

Father unknown X Mother of the Od/rgeya family. 

1. Yiswa-Deva X Queen of the Kautsa family. 

2. Agni-Raja X Queen of the Vatsa family. 

3. Dhanabhuti. 

The Mathura inscription of the same family continues the genealogy for two more 

1 This is invariably the custom with the Rajputs; and I remember a Sati memorial stone in the fort of 
Bhatner recording the burning of six wives of Dalpat Sinh of the Bikaner family, each of whom was designated 
by her own family name, written beneath her sculptured figure, as Bhattiydni, &c. But a similar custom was 
also adopted by the Muhamadans, as in the names of the Akbardbddi Masjid and Fatehpuri Masjid at Delhi 
which were built respectively by Akbardbddi Mahal the Begam of Shah Jahan, and by Fatehpuri Begam his 

H 255. S 


generations, of whieli the first is also named in one of the short Bharhut records, as the 
donor of a Rail-bar.^ I read the Mathura inscription as follows : — 

1. hala . . . [DhoMo] 

2. bMtisa . . . Ydtsi 

3. putrasa [yddha-Pd] lasa 

4. DJumabhutisa dcmam Vedikd 

5. Torana/na/m cha Batnagriha sa — 

6. va Buddha pujwya sahd MdM-pi — 

7. ta haisdhara chata . . pariahi. 

The missing letters in the third line are exactly three, which I have supplied to 
complete the name of Vddha Pdla, the son of Dhanabhuti. I have also supplied the 
former half of Dhanabhuti's name in the first line. These restorations are fully justified 
by the occurrence of the names of Vatsi-putra and Dhanabhuti in the second and fourth 
lines, which show that the record must belong to the royal family of Srughna. Now the 
letters of this Mathura inscription have already got small mdtras, or heads, an innovation 
which places this record of Danabhuti II. about B.C. 180 to 160, or contemporary with 
Agnimitra and ApoUodotus. His grandfather Dhanabhuti I., must therefore have 
reigned from about B.C. 240 to 220, or during the lifetime of Asoka. 


No. I. Coping. 

1. Aya Ndgadevasa dcma/m. 

" Gift of the reverend Naga Deva." 

No. II. Coping. 

2. Magha Demy a Jdtakam. 

" The Magha Deva Birth."* 

3. Digha-tapasisise amisasati. 

[Dirgha-tapas instructs his female disciples.] 

4. Abode Ghetiya. 

" The Mango-tree Chaitya." (?) 

5. Svjdto-gahuto Jdtaka. 

« Birth (of Buddha) as Sujita the Bull-inviter." « (?) 

6. Biddla Jata/ra* Kuklmta Jdtaka. 

« The Cat Birth." « The Cock Birth." 

7. Dadam homo chakamo. 

" Punishment of Works Region " (?) ; that is, the place of punishment, or Hell. 

No. III. Coping. 

8. Asaddvadhmusa/ne Sigdkt iiati. 

[Story unknown — Sigdh, means a, Jackal.] 

1 See Plate LIII. No. 4, for the Mathura Inscription, and Plate LVI. No. 54, for the Bharhut record of 
Prince Vadha P41a, son of Dhanabhuti. 

2 See Plate XLVIIT. fig. 2. 3 See Plate XLVII. fig. 3. 

* The cross stroke of the letter k has been omitted by the sculptor, which leaves only the upright stroke or 
r, as given above. See Plate XLVII. fig. 5. 


No. rv. Coping. 
9. M-ndgo Jdtaha. 

" RisH-deer Birth.''^ 

Buddha was bom as a deer in the MngaMua, or « Deer Park," at Isi-vattwm or MsM- 
pattcma, near Banaras. 

10. Miga SamddaJca chetiya. 

" Deer and Lions eating together Chetiya." (?) 

No. V. CopiNa. 

11. Hcmsa Jdtakam. 

" The Goose Birth."^ 

12. Kmara Jdtakam. 

" The Kinnara Birth."* 

13. Jdtila 8ahM. 

" Assembly of the Jatilians." 

No. VII. Coping. 

14. TJda Jdtaha* 

[Story unknown.] The Uda Birth. 

15. Sechha Jdtaha.^ 

[Story unknown.] The Seeha Birth. 

No. Vni. Coping. 

16. Ka/rahahata Nigamasa ddmam. 

" Gift of Nigama of Karahakata." 

17. BMsaha/ramji/ya Jdtaka. 

" The Lotus-offering Birth." (?)« 

18. Vadukohatha dohati nadode pavate. 

[Story unknown.] 

19. Jabu nadode pavate. 

I suppose that the tree in the bas-relief is intended for the JambuJ' 

No. IX. Coping. 

20. Ja/nako Raja Sivald Devi. 

" Janako R4ja (and) SivaM, Devi."^ 

21. GMtupdda Sila. 

The inscription seems to refer to the split {Ghiim) in the rock (dh).* 

22. JDudto-gm dadati , . 

[Story unknown.] 

1 See Plate XLIII. fig. 1. 

2 See Plate XXVII. fig. 11. 
s See Plate XXVII. fig. 12. 
* See Plate XL VI. fig. 2. 

5 See Plate XLVI. fig. 8. 

» See Plate XL VIII. fig. 7. 
' See Plate XLVIIL fig. 11. 
* See Plate XLJV. fig. 2. 
» See Plate XLV. fig. 9. 


No. I. Pillar. 

1. Vedisd Ghcupa Devdyd Bevati Mita bhariyd/ya pathama thabho ddmrni. 

" The first Pillar-gift of Cliapa Deva, wife of Revati Mitra of Vedisa." 
Vedisa is the old name of Sesnaga/r, a ruined city situated in the fork of the Bes or 
Vedisa River and the Betwa within two miles of Bhilsa. The inscription is engraved on 
the first Pillar of the Railing next to the Gateway.^ 

No. 11. PiLLAK. 

2. Bhadantasa Aya Bhuta Bakhitasa Khujati-dakhiyasa dcma/m. 

" Grift of the lay brother (Bhadanta) the reverend Bhuta-rakshita of Khujati- 

3. Bhagwvato-Vesabhv/no-Bodhisdlo. 

" The Sala Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Viswabhu." 
The Bodhi Tree of this Buddha was a Sdla or Shorea-robusta.^ 

4. Aya Gorakhitasa ddmi/m. 

" Grift of the reverend Gorakshita." 

5. Aya-Panthakasa thahho ddna/m. 

" Pillar-gift of the reverend Panthaka." 

6. Ghulakoka Bevatd. 

" The goddess Chulakoka," (or Little Koka.)* 

No. VI. Pillar. 

7. DabMnikd/ya Mahdmukhisa DMta-badhikaya Bhichumiya dd/irnm. 

" Gift of the Nun Dhritabadhika, the Mahamukhi (?) of Dabhinika." 

No. VII. Pillar. 

8. Tdniya ddnrmm 

Pdtaliputa Ndga Senaya Kodi. 

" Gift of Niga Sena of Pataliputra, a descendant of Kaundinya." (?) 

No. VIII. Pillar. 

9. 8amand/yd Bhikhimiyd GhudatMlikdyd ddna/m. 

" Gift of the Nun Samana of Chudathilika." 

No. IX. Pillar. 

10. BahadagajatiranataTW Isd Bakhitaputasa Anomdasa thabho (ddnam). 

" Gift of Ananda, son of Isi Rakshita, the . . (title unknown). 

11. Bhagavato Koniga/m&nasa Bodhi. 

" Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Kanaka Muni."* 

1 See Plate XII. This Pillar has the Standard Bearer and Belie Bearer sculptured on its inward faces. 

2 See Plate XXIX. fig. 2, 3 See Plate XXIH. fig. 3. * See Plate XXIX. %. 4. 


No. X. Pillar. 

12. Bhojahatakdya Digomagaye BUchhmiya dcmam. 
" G-ift of the Nun Diganaga of Bhojakataka." 

13. Ndga JdtaJca. 

"The Elephant Birtk"! 

No. XII. Pillar. 

14. Bibilcma Dildta Budhimo Gahapatino drniamb. 

" Grift of Dikshita Budhi, the householder of Bibikana." 

No. XIII. Pillar. 

15. Supdvaso Yalcho. 

" The Yaksha Supravasu." 

16. Dha/ma Gutasa ddmmn thabho. 

" Pillar-gift of Dharma Gupta." 

No. XIV. Pillar. 

17. BSdhdna Dilcati Suladhasa Asavdrikasa ddna/m. 

" Gift of Dikshita Suladha, the Asavarika." 

The term Asawarika is most probably intended for an Aswdr, 8awdr, or " horseman." 

... -.i.Jii."- '»■' 

No. XV. Pillar. 

18. Pusasa thabho dcmam. 

" Pillar-gift of Pushya." 

19. Miga Jdtakam. 

" The Deer Birth." ^ 

20. e/eiavcwra Anddhapedilco deti Tcoti scmthatena hetd. 

" An^thapindika presents Jetavana, (having become) its purchaser for a layer 
of Kotis." * 
Mr. Childers' remarks on this inscription will be found in the "Academy" for 
5th December 1874. 

21. KosamU'Kuti. 

" The Kosambi Temple." 

22. Gcmdha Kuti. 

" ' ' " The Gandha' Temple." 
These two inscriptions are attached to the buildings in the famous Jetavana garden 
which is described in No. 20. 

No. XVI. Pillar. 

23. Dhama Bahhitasa ddnam. 

" Gift of Dharma Rakshita." 

24. Ghakmdho Ndga Baja. 

" Chakavaka, King of the Nagas." \ 

1 See Plate XXV. fig. 2. I * See Plate XXVIII. fig. 3. 

2 See Plate XXV. fig. 1. I * See Plate XXI. fig. 1, 


25. Ywudalm Yahho. 

" The Yaksha Virudaka." 

26. Oangito Yahho. 

" The Yaksha Gangita.^ 


Corner Pillars — S. G-ate. 

27. Aya Isadmasa BhdnaJcasa dcma/m. 

" Gift of the reverend Isadina of Bhanaka." 

28. Bhagavato 8dka Mwnmo Bodhi. 

« The Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Sakya Muni." 

29. Pv/rathvmapwsasudha Vasa Deva. 


30. Uta/ra/m disabwni sa/vatcmisisa. 


31. Bakhmi disa chhaki mava/m cha rasahdscmi. 


32. Sddika Smimnadcm im/rwm devcmwm. 

This inscription is placed immediately below a bas-relief representing the dance and 
song of the Apsarases, to which it directly refers in the words 8adika defocmam, praises of 
the gods. 

33. Misakosa Achha/rd. 

34. Svbhada Achha/rd. 

35. PadMmdvati Achha/rd. 

36. Ahmbusa Achhard. 

These four inscriptions are separately engraved, one of them being placed behind 
each of the four dancers in the bas-relief of the dance of the Apsarases. The names are 
easily recognised as those of four of the most famous of the heavenly courtesans, namely, 
Misrahesi, Svbhadrd, Padrndvati, and Alambusha. The last was the mother of Raja Visala, 
the founder of Yais&li. 

Here we see that the Sanskrit ps was changed to chh in Pali, which was also the 
representative of ts.^ 

37. Kadariki. 

This is inscribed between two standing figures, male and female, on Prasenajit's 

38. Vajajpi Vyadha/ro. 


39. Bhagawato dha/rma chaka/m. 

« The Dharma Chakra of Buddha." 

40. Raja Pasenaji Kosalo. 

" The Raja Prasenajit of Kosala."* 

41. Erapato Ndja Raja, 

" Brapata, king of the Nagas." 

1 See Plate XXI. fig. 2. 1 » See Plate XIV. fig. 2. 

See Plate XV. fig. 1. I * See Plate XIII. fig. 1. 


42. Erapato Ndga Bdja Bhagavato vandate. 

" ErS,pata, king of the Nagas, -worsliips [the invisible figure] of Bhagavat." 
Here the king of the Nagas is kneeling before a flowering tree, beneath -which is a 
throne.^ The tree here represented is a Sirisa, or Acacia, beneath which Buddha is 
said to have received the salutation of the Mga king. The story is told in the com- 
mentary on V. 182 of the Dhammapada [see Academy,' 5 April 1875], and also by the 
Chinese PUgrim Hwen Thsang. The six Swisa trees of the legend are all given in the 

43. BaJm hathiko. 

44. Baku hathiko Nigodha nadode. 

The first of these short labels means simply " the herd of elephants," to which the 
second adds the name of the tree Nigodha (or Nyagrodha), the Banian, before which they 
are bowing down. I am ignorant of the exact meaning of nadode. The shorter label is 
on the railing beneath the scene ; the longer one on the throne beneath the Banian Tree.* 

45. Susupdlo Jcoddyo vetiho Ardmalco. 

This inscription is engraved in the field of the Elephant bas-relief above mentioned — 
just behind the heads of two human figures, who must be the Susupdla and Kodra of the 
label. The third word may also be read as VedAiko? 

46. Yasika 


On Pillars op Railings — S. W. Quadrant. 

47. Sondya dd/rmm thabho. 

" Pillar-gift of SonA." 

48. Chakula/nam Samgha mitasa thahho ddmam. 

" Pillar-gift of Sangha-mitra of Chakulana." ■ 

49. Bhagavato Kdsajaasa Bodhi. 

" The Bodhi Tree of Buddha Kasyapa."* 

50. Ndgaye hhichhvmwye ddmtm. 

" Gift of the Nun Mga." 

51. Bhadanta Valakasa Bhd/nakasa ddnam, thahho. 

" Pillar-gift of the lay brother Yalaka of Bhanaka." 

52. Karahakata Ghayahhutakasa thahho ddnam. 

" PiUar-gift of Chayabhutaka of Karahakata." 

53. Kosamheyelcaya hhikhuniya VemwagdmhiyaAja Dhama Bakhita. 

" Grift of the Nun Dharmma Eakshita of Yenuwagrama in Kosambi." 
When I visited Kosam, the ancient Kosambi, after leaving Bharhut, I made inquiries 
about the village of Vemmagrdma, or " Bambu town." There is a Ben pArwa still 
existing to the north-east of Kosam, where I found that some ancient brick foundations 
were being dug up by the zamindar. 

54. Tileotiko Ohakamo. 

" The region of Trikuta." * 
This name has been discussed in my account of the Nagas, where I have suggested 
that the bas-relief to which this inscription is attached may be a representation of the 

1 See Plate XIV. fig. 3. 
a See Plate XV. fig. 3. 

3 See Plate XXX. fig. 1. 
* See Plate XXVII. fig. 1. 



Ndga Loica region of Snakes and Elephants (both called Naga), which was situated under 
the Trikuta rocks which supported Mount Meru. 

55. Bhadanta Mahilasa thabho ddnam. 

" Pillar-gift of the lay brother Mahila." 

56. Karahahata Swmikasa ddnam thabho. 

" Pillar-gift of Samika of Karahahata." 
The name of this place occurs also in No. 52. It may be read as Karhalcata, and 
might possibly be the original form of the name Karha, near Manikpur on the Ganges. 

57. Bhadanta SamaJcasa thabho ddnam,. 

" Pillar-gift of the lay brother Samaka." ' 

58. Yava-MajhaMyam JdtaJcam. 

" The Yava-Majhakiya Birth." ^ 
I have given the story of this bas-relief in my account of the Jdtakas, but it has not 
yet been identified with any of the published names of the Ceylonese Jatakas. 

59. Sirimd Devata. 

" The godess Sri-ma." ^ 
The title of Srvmd was given to Maya Devi, the mother of Sakya Muni. I presume 
that it is an abbreviation of Sri-mdta, or the " fortunate mother" ; although it may also 
be a contraction of Sri Maya. The inscription is attached to a large female statue on one 
of the pillars of the South-west quadrant. It seems not impossible, however, that the 
statue may be that of Sirvma, the beautiful sister of the physician Jivaka. 

60. Suchilovna-Yakho. 

" The Yaksha Suchiloma." « 
This Yaksha has given his name to a discourse in the Sutta Nipdta. 

61. . . . rata bhihhumya thabho ddnam. 

" Pillar-gift of the Nun . . , ratna. 

.i " 


62. Bhadantasa Aya Isipdlitasa Bhdnakasa Navahmdhasa ddnam. 

" Gift of the lay brother, the reverend Isipalita of Bhanaka (Nava-kamika must 
be his title). 

63. Ajdtasata Bhagavato vandate. 

" Ajatasatru worships (the feet) of Buddha." 
The footprints of Buddha are carved on the step of the throne.* 

64. Svdhmnma Deva sabhd Bhagavato Ghuda Maha. 

" The grand head-dress (relic) of Buddha, in the Assembly Hall of the Devas." ' 
I take Ghvda, which means a " crest, or topknot of hair," to be the name of the 
object which occupies the place of worship on the throne or altar. This object is beyond 
all doubt intended for Buddha's hair and head-dress, which were carried to the Trayas- 
trinshas Heavens by the Devas. When I first saw the small photograph of this bas-relief 
I read the words at the end of the first line as Beva Sabha ; but when I saw the pillar 
itself I found that the true reading was Deva Sabhd, or the " Assembly of Devas." This 
correction I communicated to Mr. Childers on the 18th April 1875. The same correction 

1 See Plate XXV. fig. 3. 2 gge piate XXIH. fig. 1. s See Plate XXII, fig. 2. 

* See Plate XVI. fig. 3. ^ See Plate XVI. fig. 1. 


was published by him in the " Academy " for 1st May 1875, about ten days before the 
receipt of my letter. 

65. Vijayanto Pdsdde. 

" The Yijayanta Palace." 
As this was the name of the Palace of the Gods in the Trayastrinshas Heavens, my 
identification of the object of worship in the Deva Sabhd is confirmed. 

66. MaMsdmdyilcayam Amhagwto Devwputo dhakato Bhagavato siscmi patiscmdU. 

The scene to which this label is attached represents the worship of Buddha's foot- 

Pillars of Eailing — N.W. Quadkant. 

67. Moragi/rihrna NdgiUyd bhiJchimiya ddnmn thabho. 

" Pillar-gift of the Nun Nagila of Moragiri." 

68. Bhagavato Vipasino Bodhi. 

" The Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Yipaswin."^ 

69. Vedisa Phagu Devasa ddna/m. 

" Gift of Phalgu Deva of Vedisa (Besnagar)." 

70. Dodapdpechena cKharo. 

71- Pwnkdya Day alcana ddnam. 

" Gift of Dayakana of Purika." 

72. Bhagavato Kalmsadliasa Bodhi. 

" The Bodhi Tree of the Buddha Erakusandha.''^ 

73. Vedisa Anurddhaya ddnam. 

" Gift of Anuradha of Yedisa (Besnagar)." 

74. Ohadantiya JdtaJcam. 

" Birth (of Buddha) as a Chhadanta Elephant."* 

CoENER Pillars — ^N. Gate. 

75. Vitura Punaldya JdtaJcam. 

" The Vidhura (and) Punnaka Birth."^ 

76. Brahma Devomd/navalco. 


Displaced Pillars. 

77. Bhadanta Kanadasa Bhdnalcasa thabho ddnam Ghihulaniyasa. 

" Pillar-gift of the lay brother Kanada Bhanaka of Chikulaniya." 

78. Yakhi/ni 8udasa/na. 

" The Yakshini Sudarsana." 

79. . Tiadoda pdde ch&na chhaJco. . , 


1 See Plate XVI. fig. 2. ^ See Plate XXIX. fig. I. s gee Plate XXIX. fig. 3. 

* See Plate XXVI. fig. 2. ^ gee Plate XVIII, fig. 2. 

H 255. 




80. Bhadcmta Budha Rakhitasa Satupadcmasa ddnwm thdbo. 

" Pillar-gift of the lay brother Budha Rakshita of Satupadana." (?) 

81. Chada Tahhi. 

" The Yakshini Chandra."^ 
I read as above because I suppose that if the name Chanda were intended it would 
have been spelt with the cerebral d. 

82. Kwpvro YaJcho. 

" The Yaksha Kuvera."^ 

83. Ajahdlaho Yahho. 

" The Yaksha Ajakalaka." 

84. Moraginhma Pusd/yd dd/rwt/m thabho. 

" Pillar-gift of Pushya of Moragiri." 

85. Aya Ghulasa Sutomtilcasa Bhoga vaMwmvyasa ddnam. 

" Grift of the reverend Chula Sautrantika, the increaser of enjoyment." (?) 

86. Moragwikma Thupaddsasa ddmam thabho. 

" Gift of Thupadisa of Moragiri." 
Thupaddsa, in Sanskrit Stwpaddsa, or " servant of the Stupa," is in the inscription an 
actual name, and not a mere title. 

87. Ndsika Gorakhitaya thabho ddnam Vasukasa bhmiydya. 

" Pillar-gift of Gorakshita of Nasika, the wife of Vasuka." 

88. Maharasa Atevdsmo Aya Sdmahasa thabho ddnam. 

" Pillar-gift of Mahara, the pupil of the reverend Samika." 

89. Bhagavato JRuhdanti. 

" Buddha as Rukdanti."' 
This inscription has been discussed in my account of the bas-relief of Maya Devis' 
dream, where I have suggested that ruk may mean " sounding or trumpeting," from ru, 
to sound or make a particular sort of sound, which it is recorded the Chhadanta Elephant 
emitted as he approached the couch of Maya Devi. 

Pillars at BatanmIra. 

90. Sakd/ya thabho ddmam. 

" PiUar-gift of Saka." 

91. NaTbdagwmo Bhd/nakasa Selapv^aka thabho ddna/m. 

" PiUar-gift of Bhanaka Selapuraka of Nandagiri (? Nander)." 

92. Ida Sdh, guha. 

" The Cave Hall of Indra." 

93. Pusadataye Nagarilcaye Bhichmvye. 

" [Gift] of the Nun Pushyadatta of Nagarika." 

94. Mugaphakasa Jdtaka. 

" The Mugaphaka Birth." 

1 See Plate XXII. fig. 3. ^ gee Plate XXII. fig. 1. ^ gee Plate XXVIII. fig. 2. 


95. Moragifi Jita mitasa ddnam. 

"■ Grift of Jita-mitra of Maragiri." 

96. Ka/raMcata Utara gidUhasa thabho ddnam. 

" Pillar-gift of UttaragidMka of Karahakata." 

Pillars at Pataora. 

97. Yambumano avayesi JdtaJcam. 

This scene is called the AndhabJmta Jdtaha, or the " Blindman Birth " in Ceylon. 

98. MahalcoJca Devatd. 

" The goddess Mahakoka," or " Great Koka." 

99. GhuladhaJcasa PuriJcdya ShatudesaJcasa ddnam. 

" Grift of Chuladhaka Purika of Bhatudesaka." 
100. Vedisa Aya Mdyd ddnam. 

" Gl-ift of the reverend Maya of Vedisa." 

Inscriptions on Rails— S. W. Quadrant. 

1. Sapa Gutaye hMkhwmye ddnam. 

" Gift of the Nun Sarpa Gupta." 

2. Pdtalijputa Kodiydmya 8aJcaja Bevdyd da/nam. 

" Gift of Sakaja Deva, of the race of Kaundinya of Pataliputra." 

3. Kdkandi/ya Somdya bhikJmniya dd/nrnn. 

" Gift of the Nun Soma of Kakandi." 

4. Pdtalvputa Mahidasenasa ddnam, 

" Gift of Mahendra Sena of Pataliputra." 

5. Ghudathilihdyd Ndga Bevdyd hJdkJmmiya. . . 

" (Gift) of the Nun Naga Deva of Chudathilika." 

6. GhudatMlihdyd Kujardyd ddnam. 

« Gift of Kunjara of Chudathilika." 

7. Dhama Quia mdtu Pusa Bevaya ddnam. 

" Gift of Pushya Deva, mother of Dharma Gupta." 

8. YajMMyd ddnam. 

" Gift of Yajhiki." 

9. Bhama Bakhitaya ddnam Sudd. 

" Rail-gift of Dharmma Rakshita." 
This is the first occurrence of the term 8ucM, which I have translated by Rail (or bar), 
as it is found only in the Rail-bar inscriptions, where it takes the place of thabho or pillar, 
in the Pillar inscriptions. Its literal meaning is " needle," and its application to the Rail- 
bars was no doubt due to its needle-like function of threading all the pillars together. 

10. Ati Mutasa ddnam. 

" Gift of Atrimuta." 

11. Latuwd JdtaJcam. 
« The Latuwa (bird) Birth.' 

12. Nadutaraya ddnam Suchi. 

" Rail-gift of Nadutara." 


1 See Plate XXVI. fig. 1. 
T 2 


Rail Inscriptions — S. Gtatb. 

13. Mudasa ddnam. 

" Gift of Mudra." 

14. Ismasa dcmam. 

" Gift of Isana." 

15. Isidatasa ddnam. 

" Gift of Isidata (or Rishi datta)." 

16. Aya Punidvasuno Suchi dctma/m. 

" Rail-gift of the reverend Punarvasu." 

17. Odga-mitasa Suchi ddnam. 

" Rail-gift of Ganga Mitra (or Garga Mitra)." 

18. Kanhilasa Bhdnahasa ddnam. 

" Gift of KanMla of Blianaka." 

Rail Inscriptions — S. W. Quadrant. 

19. Deva Bahshitasa ddnam. 

" Gift of Deva Rakshita." 

20. Vedisd Tahhuta BdkMtasa dmmn. 

" Gift of Tabhuta Rakshita of Yedisa." 

21. Ooldyd Pd/rihiniyd ddnam. 

" Gift of Parikini of Gola." 


22. Pwrikayd Ida Devdyd ddnam. 

" Gift of Indra Deva of Purika." 

23. Pwrikdyd Setaka matu dd/nam. 

" Gift of Setaka's mother of Purika." 

24. Pwrikdyd Sdmdya ddnam. 

" Gift of Sama of Purika." 

25. Budha Bahhitaye ddnam, hhiehhwrn/ya. 

" Gift of Buddha Rakshita the Nun." 

26. Bhutaye hhichuniye ddnam. 

" Gift of Bhuta the Nun." 

27. Aya Apikmahasa dd/nam. 

" Gift of the reverend Apikinaka." 

28. Sanghilasa ddnam Suchi. 

" Rail-gift of Sanghila." 

29. Sangha Bakhitasa Mdtapiinma athaye ddna/m. 

" Gift of Sangha Rakshita on account of his father and mother.' 

30. Dhutasa Suchi danrn/m. 

" Rail-gift of Dhuta." 

31. Yakhilasa Svdd ddnam. 

" Rail-gift of Yakhila." 

32. Sihasa Suchi ddnam. 

" Rail-gift of Sinha." 


33. Isi Rahhitusa dcmam. 

" Gift of Isi Rakshita." 

34. Smmasa ddnami. 

" Gift of Sirima." 

35. Bhadanta Deva Senasa dcmam. 

" Gift of the lay brother Deva Sena." 

36. . . . Jcaya bMchhmvya dcmam. 

" Gift of the Nun . . . ka." 

37. Nadmagarihdyd Ida Devaya ddnam. 

" Gift of Indra Deva of Nandinagara (Nander)." 

38. Gopdlasa mata (?) Gosdlasa ddmrni. 

" Gift of Gos&la (or Gopala . . ." 
This inscription is engraved twice on the same rail; first in thin and somewhat 
cursive letters, and second in thicker letters, as if the first record had been faulty, or 
disapproved. It might, however, be read as the " gift of Gosala the mother of Gopala." 

39. Kachulasa .... bhdriydya ddmam. 

" Gift of .... s' wife of Kachula." 

40. Jeta hha/rasa dAnam. 

" Gift of Jetabhara." 

41. Aya Jdto Sepetalcmo 8ugM ddna/m. 

" Rail-gift of the reverend Jata Sepetaki." 
The term Sepatilco occurs in the Arian Pali inscription of Taxila, where, according to 
Professor Dowson, it is the name of some " building or establishment." It is probable, 
therefore, that SepetakiTio is the title of the reverend Jata, as keeper or guardian of the 

42. Buddha Bakhitasa BwpaJcdrakasa dd/nam,. 

" Gift of Buddha Rakshita, the sculptor." 
Here we have the name of one of the sculptors of the Bharhut bas-reliefs. I believe 
that it will be possible to recognise other specimens of his chisel by some slight pecu- 
liarities which I noticed in the shapes of some of the letters of this inscription. 

43. Bhddantasa Milcasatha Bdhutiyasa ddnam. 

" Gift of the lay brother Mikasatha of Rakutiya." (?) 

44. Sirisapada Isi Bakhitdya ddnam. 

" Gift of Isi Rakshita of Sirisapada." 
The name of this place, Sirisapada, was probably derived from the Sirisa tree or 
Acacia, as in the case of Sirsa, and of Siris Ghat on the Betwa between Jhansi and 

45. Moragirimd Ohdtila Mdta ddnam. 

" Gift of Ghatila's mother of Moragiri." 

46. AtoMkhatasa Bhojakatakasa Suchi ddnam. 

" Rail-gift of Bhojakataka of Atangkhata," or, " of Atangkhata of Bhoja- 

47. Samddatdya ddnam. 

" Gift of Samidatta." 

48. Gh/idanasa ddmajm. 

" Gift of Chulana." 


49. Aviscmasa, dmam. 

" Gift of Avisana." 

50. (A duplicate of tte last.) 

51. 8<mgha Mitasa BodhicTwikasa dmam. 

" Gift of Sangha Mitra of Bodhi Chakra." Perhaps there may have been a 
Bodhi Chakra as well as a Dhannma Chakra, 

52. Bodhi Balchitasa Pancha/nekdydkasa dd/na/m. 

" Gift of Bodhi Eakhitasa of Panchanekay^ka." 

53. Isi BakMtasa Suchi ddncmi. 

" Rail-gift of Isi Rakshita." 

54. DhcmabMtisa rdjcmo putasa Kwmd/rasa Vddha Pdlasa (danam). 

" (Gift) of Raja Dhanabhuti's son the Prince Vadha Pala." 
Raja Dhanabhuti was the donor of the Eastern Gateway :— See his inscription, No. 1, 
The present inscription proves that the Railing and the Gateways were of the same age. 

55. Phagu Devdya hhichhwmya dammn. 

" Gift of Phalgu Deva, the Nun." 

56. Kaddya Yahhiya damrni. 

" Gift of Kanda Yakshi." 

57. Ohosd/ye dd/na/m. 

" Gift of Ghosa." 

58. Yamidasa sa . . . 

" [Gift] of Yamida . . . 

59. 8mya/-putasa Bha/rini Devasa dd/ndm. 

" Gift of Siri's son Bharini Deva." 

60. Mita Demaye ddmam. 

" Gift of Mitra Deva." 

61. Padelakasa Pusahasa Suchi dd/nam. 

" Gift of Pushyaka of Pandelaka." 

62. Asita/masdya Vala Mitasa ddna/m. 

" Gift of Vala Mitra of Asitamas4." 
Perhaps the place here mentioned may have been on the bank of the Tamas^, or 
Tons River, which flows within two miles of Bharhut. Ptolemy has a town named 
Tamasis. But Asita was also a proper name, and the town may have been called Asitor- 
masa, and not Asita/masa. 

63. {Pa) rakatika/ya Siri/mdyd dd/nmn. 

" Gift of Sirima of Parakatika." 

64. Vijitakasa Suchi dd/nmn. 

" RaU-gift of Vijita." 

65. . . . sa dd/na/m Atend. 

Gharata . . . 

66. Ti/ramMbi Migila Kuchimha Vasu Guto Machito Mahadevammi. 

This is inscribed on the Rail which bears the bas-relief of the great fish swallowing 
two boats and their crews. Machito therefore may have reference to the fish.^ 

1 See Plate XXXTV. fig. 2. 



1. Vedisa Vdsithiya Velimi 

" Gift of V4sistha (wife of) Velimi (tra.)" 

2. Aya Nanda. 

" [Gift] of the reverend Nanda." 

3. AraJm Guta Beva pufa {sa damam). 

" Gift of Araliata Gupta, son of Reva." 

4. AvdsiM. 

5. Mahada . 

6. Ghcmdd . . , 

7. Satika . . . 

8. . . rakatay^ya . . . 

9. . . Ui, rajiTie adhi rcyaha . . yata. 

10. . . . tarasa , . 

11. . . yasini say^ni . . 

12. (san) gha mi (tasa) . . 

13. . . . sahusu . , 

14. . . . niya JdtaJca, 

15. (Na) n-dagermo da (nam). 

« Gift of Nandagiri." 

16. . . y4ya danam. 

17. . . pcmcha scma. 

18. . dmsito-gm datma. 

19. (Ba) Jm hathiJcasa dscma. 
(Bhaga) vato Maha Devasa. 

By supplying the initial letters of both, lines I make out that this inscription refers 
to the scene under which it is engraved. This represents a throne (dsana) with a 
number of human hands {hahu hdhika) carved on the front. Perhaps the hands are 
intended as symbols of worshippers. 


I'nnted by George E. E^be and Wilmam Spottiswoode, 

Printers to the Queen's most Excellent Majesty. 

For Her Majesty's Stationery Office. 

[P 455.— 250.— 2/79.] 




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